Writing Men/Women Critique Thread:
edited 5th Apr '13 6:19:03 PM by ohsointocats
edited 6th Apr '13 2:52:56 AM by tsstevens
edited 5th Apr '13 7:34:56 PM by Lockedbox
edited 6th Apr '13 12:33:44 AM by peasant
edited 6th Apr '13 1:47:13 AM by ohsointocats
edited 6th Apr '13 2:01:19 AM by MorwenEdhelwen
edited 6th Apr '13 4:42:27 AM by MorwenEdhelwen
edited 6th Apr '13 4:24:17 AM by peasant
edited 6th Apr '13 7:56:44 AM by DeMarquis
“Keep your shield up!” “Don’t let him get under your guard!” “He’s just a squire, you can take him!” The knights and squires deafened Drakon as they surrounded the courtyard’s training arena. It was not often that there was a spar between a squire and an actual knight. The opponent before him was fully armored, covered in dark gray plates of metal and chainmail. The knight’s helmet obscured all of his face except for his eyes and he had a lance in his hand along with the usual shield. Compared to Drakon’s practice sword, the knight’s weapon gave him a much larger reach and gave even more of an advantage to him. The two had been trading blows with each other for the past ten minutes with neither giving in, but Drakon was tiring. He was about a foot shorter and thirty pounds lighter than his opponent, making the knight seem more like an iron fortress than a person. “Do you want to keep going, or do you give up?” The knight asked, his deep voice echoing in his helmet. “Yeah, cut the boy a break, Sir Taurus! He’s half dead on his feet; one good charge is enough to finish him.” A man yelled from the crowd. The question was surprisingly hard for him to answer. His body screamed for him to stop, but Drakon’s whole purpose for becoming a knight had been to gain more confidence. What would his father say if he heard that his son had forfeited? His decision made, he nodded, repositioning his sword and bringing his shield up. The crowd’s jeering grew louder as Sir Taurus laughed, but not in a taunting manner. “Then let us continue,” he said, brandishing his lance again. Drakon let out a startling battle cry as his practice sword lashed out at his partner. Sir Taurus blocked it with his wooden shield and countered with a lance thrust. The attack was backhanded with the side of Drakon’s blade. The knight switched tactics and charged with his shield, catching the prince off guard and knocking him to the ground. There was a moment of stunned silence before the knights burst into cheers. The squires were much quieter, but still proud that one of their own had fought a knight. There was so much talking that Drakon could not pick individual voices out, but there was one person that he could hear. “I could have guessed the outcome from the start, a soft child born of the noble ranks will never beat a true Sky Knight.” The offhanded comment stung, extinguishing the small amount of self respect he had gained in the match. Taurus had heard the comment as well. Glaring at the offending knight, he removed his helmet. Under it, his hair was cropped short and he shared his father’s, Captain Leo’s, dark skin, eyes, and hair color. His suit of armor made him look bulkier than normal, but his actual size was still large for a seventeen year old. “Is there anything that you would like to say, Sir Aries?” He loomed over the shorter man. Aries snorted, but did not respond. The Knight Captain, seeing the disagreement, decided to interfere before a fight erupted. “Alright, get out of here, all of you! Back to the castle, there’s nothing more to see here.” Captain Leo bellowed. He was named after the lion’s star sign as was the tradition of the Sky Knights, and he lived up to that name with his skills in battle… along with his voice. Whenever he was yelling, he yelled at what Drakon liked to think was the average volume of a Lion’s roar. Not that he’d ever say something like that to his face. Sir Leo was like an older, more intimidating Taurus, his face scarred and serious from the War. Taurus didn’t seem as overbearing as his father because he and Drakon had often played together as children. The crowd dispersed, voices dying down to a murmur. Taurus watched them leave, as if daring to hear another remark about his friend. Realizing that Drakon was still on the ground, the knight helped him up and playfully slapped his shoulder. The prince stumbled and almost fell down again. “Hey, don’t feel bad. Usually I knock you down in about five minutes. This time you lasted ten. That’s progress!” Drakon was still unsatisfied with himself. “Yes, but is it good enough?” He asked softly, his dark purple eyes focused on the ground. Taurus sighed, reminding himself of how fragile Drakon’s self confidence was. “If this is about Sir Aries, don’t take what he says to heart. He is just bitter about the fact that the Sky Knights serve a new kingdom. He will get over it eventually. You know how older people get set in their ways.” With Taurus’s encouragement, Drakon’s mood improved considerably. He may have been caked with dirt, and he was pretty sure that under his armor were multiple bruises, but he was happy nonetheless. Training as a Squire was the highlight of his day, the time when nothing mattered except how well he could fight. In the courtyard, Drakon was treated like any other person would and he enjoyed it to the fullest. Whether he would become a good king or not no longer applied to him.
“Good afternoon, Mister Luciano!” Tigris greeted. She was wearing a simple lavender dress. A silver circlet crown with the royal crest, an eclipse, indented into it rested on her head just over her bangs. “Good morning, Signorina.” Luciano answered. He tended to talk to people using the titles of his first language. Paige followed in Tigris’s wake and gave the wizard an apologetic smile. “Sorry about the lateness, Sir…And the door, of course.” She said as she gently closed it behind her. He waived his hand in a dismissive manner as he moved field journals and textbooks on magic off of a large wooden table. The wizard snapped his fingers, his eyes turning from green to a glowing gray color. A few stray papers floated after him, levitating by magic. “People of Jamesport such as you, Signorina Paige, are always over polite. There is no need to apologize to me. Besides, someone needs to make sure I’m still alive down here! And Tigris, do not touch that unless you wish to be the mother of a baby griffon.” Luciano said without turning around to look at her. Tigris sheepishly backed away from the large brown egg placed on a metal stand. “How did you”- “How did I know what you were going to do? I’m a wizard, child. I have eyes on the back of my head.” He answered as seriously as possible. Paige laughed after seeing the younger girl’s bewildered expression. “Just where is Signore Drakon?” Luciano asked, having finished clearing the table. “It is not like him to be late.” Tigris sat down on a stool, drumming her fingers on the table as she waited. “He has knight training today, maybe he forgot like Paige did?” Paige blushed and gave Tigris a stern look. “Have you completely forgotten your manners today, Miss Tigris?” She asked, frustration seeping into her voice. The Princess stuck her tongue out at her and Paige sighed. “I’ll take that as a yes, then. I’m sure Master Drakon will be here in a moment.” The study door forcefully met the wall a second time as Drakon rushed in. “Maybe I should just invest in a curtain for the doorframe…” Luciano mumbled. Drakon was dressed in a dark violet tunic and indigo pants along with a pair of sandals. A circlet like Tigris’s sat on his head, flattening his shoulder length hair that usually stuck up a little on the top and in the back. His uncut bangs hung in front of his eyes, partially obscuring them from view. Not that it mattered anyway, for he was looking down at the wooden floor as if memorizing the cracks in it would ease his embarrassment. “Uh, I apologize for being tardy, Mister Luciano. I um…took a shower and may have…lost track of time…” He trailed off, making a failing attempt to not blush. Luciano smiled; the contrast between Tigris’s extroverted behavior and her older brother’s more reserved personality amused him. “It is fine, I assure you. I am just glad you have decided to join us today nonetheless, Prince Drakon.” He nodded quickly and sat down next to his sister without another word. Luciano stood in front of a rolling blackboard and cleared his throat. “Today, we’re reviewing the basics of magic, what it is, how it’s made, and the many forms it manifests as.” His attention turned to Paige. “I know I’ve asked before, but it is never too late to start. Are you sure you don’t want to use magic? I could unlock it right now if-” “I’m quite sure of myself,” She rejected. “A lady-in-waiting wouldn’t know what to do with magic anyway. Continue on with the lesson,” Paige leaned against a wall in the back of the room. The wizard shrugged. “If you insist.” He couldn’t really comprehend why a person wouldn’t want magic, but it wasn’t really his business.
edited 19th Jun '13 1:41:33 AM by MorwenEdhelwen