[FANFIC] Frost (completed 2008/06/29)

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[FANFIC] Frost (completed 2008/06/29)

Postby Ineluki on Thu Jun 26, 2008 12:04 pm

I hereby present my first EGS Fanfic:

Frost

Short summary: Ellen, Tedd and Grace are drawn into a deadly adventure with few hopes of survival.
Note that this fic does not play in moperville and has little to do with EGS except for the three characters. It's a really short story, intend to pull the reader over a board of pointy nails so to speak and does not match the normal tone of EGS.
Rating: T

UPDATE:
Click here to download the full pdf: Link
Or read the story online here
(The text version below is outdated and not corrected)

Notes:
This is my first english short story in quiet some time. Hope you enjoy it. :)
And if somebody wants to read, but cannot use the pdf format, let me know.
As I mentioned below the summary, this fic has little to do with EGS except for the characters. I wrote this sort of as an experiment - of many sorts. With the characters already established, the story can focus fully on what it is about: a thrilling race against time with no time to think. So yes, this is fully intentional. Expect long term effects of this little adventure in future stories.

All feedback appreciated.
Last edited by Ineluki on Mon Nov 10, 2008 2:50 pm, edited 7 times in total.
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Re: [FANFIC] Frost

Postby Helseth on Fri Jun 27, 2008 3:07 am

Intresting start. I Cant wait to see where this is going


and hurrah 4 new experiences. first pdf fanfiction i've seen
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If the strange behaviour of my character offends remember that the twisted mind that created it a probably several countries away.

Brain bleach available on request

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Re: [FANFIC] Frost

Postby Ineluki on Fri Jun 27, 2008 2:10 pm

Well, I'm just used to submitting manuskripts in pdf-format. It *is* pretty good readable on pc as well as it's suitable for printing.
Anyway chapter 2 is up now! And I edited some typos/german quote signs in chapter 1.
I'm sure I can finish chapter 3 tomorrow or at least till sunday. Stay tuned.

But on the other hand I must say I had expected a bit more readers. Did I overestimate the average interest in egs fan fiction? Is the unfamiliar format so daunting? Or something else I overlooked?
Oh well, I'll finish this one way or another and decide after this weekend if it'd worthwhile to start another fic some time... after all, I purely write this for the audience. :)
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Re: [FANFIC] Frost

Postby Helseth on Sun Jun 29, 2008 12:28 am

You keep writing and i'll keep reading

im enjoying it and recommend it
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veni, vedi, cerebra consumpsi
Inventory moved to wiki

If the strange behaviour of my character offends remember that the twisted mind that created it a probably several countries away.

Brain bleach available on request

"So many hancuffs in my life and NEVER a single hot chick involved" Dave, crfh
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Re: [FANFIC] Frost (completed 2008/06/29)

Postby Ineluki on Sun Jun 29, 2008 3:10 am

Glad you like it! :)
Anyway, the third (and last) chapter is now up. Enjoy.
Yes, there are a few questions left open, but I prefer to leave room for a little speculation and in case I'll write another story, there'll be some continuity and maybe some more answers ^.^
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Re: [FANFIC] Frost (completed 2008/06/29)

Postby Helseth on Mon Jun 30, 2008 12:23 am

despite the lack of responses it was a good story

hope you write more stories in the future
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veni, vedi, cerebra consumpsi
Inventory moved to wiki

If the strange behaviour of my character offends remember that the twisted mind that created it a probably several countries away.

Brain bleach available on request

"So many hancuffs in my life and NEVER a single hot chick involved" Dave, crfh
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Re: [FANFIC] Frost (completed 2008/06/29)

Postby Ineluki on Mon Jun 30, 2008 2:37 am

thanks, but no, I probably won't. You see, I write this for two reasons. a) for the audience, b) to recieve criticism.
But there seems to be no audience here for me and thus no valuable criticism that I can use to improve my english writing.
I'll try not to rant here (even if I do feel like it), but see it this way: I consider myself a semi-professional writer (at least in the german language) and I know well the pro's and con's of my style. This was - as already mentioned - an experiment of many sorts and should before anything else show me what I can improve, when writing english at this rate (>3k words per day, not correcting anything but spelling and grammar afterwards).
But since I can't even begin to guess why there is neither criticism nor praise here, I better cut my losses instead of starting another time consuming experiment without knowing what went wrong in the previous one - be it style, setting, genre, whatever...
but if it were just one of those things, somebody would have posted it, no? I mean, if I get some votes that you all want to read EGS poetry... just tell me! I could write whatever you like, but I have to know what the general desire is. I won't do any more blind try-outs like this one.


As a last try, here are the three chapters, slightly cleaned up and as plain text for those who don't like pdf, but for some reason did not post that.


##############################################################################################################################


Chapter 1 – A Hell, Frozen Over

“Bye, Ellen! See you Monday!“ Grace shut the car door and hurried towards her house. They were late this Friday and Tedd would be home soon. She wanted to be ready to greet him for the weekend.
She had only made two steps towards the front door, however, as it swung open, and Tedd fell through backwards. He slammed hard onto the door steps, but immediately tried standing back up and crawling away from the door.
“Tedd,“ Grace yelled in sudden fear due to the sudden knowledge, that something was terribly wrong here.
She subconsciously noticed the car brakes as Ellen apparently caught on to the scene and stopped.
With two long strides, Grace was next to her beloved and moved to pick him up.
Tedd seemed only half conscious now. He made some week protective movements and whispered something she couldn't understand. He had several bad bruised on his head, the one on his forehead bleeding badly.
"Grace? Tedd! What's going on here?“ Ellen hurried towards them.
"I don't know! He just fell through the door and..:“
Ellen pushed past her towards the front door, looking for possible dangers.
"No,“ Tedd gasped weakly.
"Tedd! Don't speak, you're hurt,“ she tried to comfort him, while heaving him half into her arms.
"Don't... no... run,“ he coughed.
"But we... Ellen!“ Grace yelled, suddenly realizing, that Ellen might do something very stupid entering the house now. "Ellen, come back here!“ she cried, close to panic.
"Grace,“ Tedd feebly tried to gain her attention. "We have to...“
A dull bang came from inside the house, just as Ellen appeared back on the doorstep. Grace saw her twirling around again, dropping into a defensive crouch.
But it didn't help her in the least.
Grace didn't have the words to describe what she saw the next moment. The whole house seemed to bend inwards for a split second, then reverse it's momentum outward. Simultaneously came the blast wave.
She could only watch helplessly, as the shock wave of distorted air ripped right through Ellen – her outline suddenly seemed to bulge and bent – and onwards toward her and Tedd, who were still cowering at the bottom of the front door step. Then her world dissolved into the stinging light of a thousand suns.


Severe cold awakened him rudely. His lungs seemed to burn with frostiness, his skin crawl with ice crystals. Abruptly, Tedd jerked his head upwards – and instantly wished he hadn't done so, for the dump throbbing in his forehead instantly exploded into burning agony. But he couldn't stop. His body told him with all effort that he was freezing. He felt the adrenalin pumping through his veins. If he didn't get up now, he'd never do so again.
But even opening his eyes was hard. No, just for the first time, he realized. Something had incrusted his his lids. He wiped over it with the back of his hand and saw that it was dried blood.
Now just what the hell was going on here?
Slow and steadily he heaved his head up enough so he could take a look at his surroundings.
The floor he was lying on consisted of big, carved blocks of rock, which were covered by a thin layer of ice, with only few holes in it's fair surface.
A few meters further lay another figure on the floor.
"Grace,“ Tedd whispered, fear striking into in his heart like a cold needle.
He yanked himself up on hands and knees and scurried over to her motionless body.
"Oh please, please, please, let her be okay,“ he prayed absentmindedly to whatever gods might be listening.
It took him some effort with his frozen limbs to turn her around and pull her close.
Her breath was faint, but it was there. A surge of relief rolled through Tedd. She lived.
But there was no telling how long they would both stay alive in this harsh environment.
"C'mon, sweetie, wake up,“ he whispered, patted her cheeks and blew his warm breath upon the blue-turning lips. "Time to get up.“
Grace stirred. Slowly at first but Tedd was persistent and finally she opened her eyes.
"Wha'..?“
"Shhh, keep your mouth closed for now, it's too cold,“ he advised her. Then, as an afterthought: "Maybe you should take on a form that has fur.“
"Mmmm,“ she made and gladly heeded his advice. "Much better,“ she assessed seconds later, with the thick winter fur of a squirrel protecting her.
"Good, now let's get up and look for a shelter.“
"Where are we?“
"If only I...“ Tedd began, but the rest of his thought got blown away like a leaf in the wind, as he stood up and could – for the first time – take a real good look around.
They had been close to a ledge and now that he could see beyond it, the view was simply breathtaking.
If this was hell, then hell had indeed frozen over. For ice and snow covered everything Tedd could see. The only hues where shades of blue and crystalline white. There seemed to be no life whatsoever, only frost and stone.
In front of them loomed what could only be called an abyss. A valley so deep that he had trouble making out the floor of it. Other stone platforms – roofs as he suspected – were build on this steep slope. And beyond this precipice: mountains, as high and majestic as he couldn't have imagined them.
"What is this place?“ he heard Grace whisper fearfully. Tedd knew he wasn't the only one who felt like a small bug in a world made for giants.
Slowly he looked around. The hillside continued above them, but something at the back of the roof they stood on caught his attention. Something moved over there.
He guided Grace's attention towards it.
Seconds later, they could make it out: "Ellen!“
Apparently wobbly on her legs, but still walking straight, their friend made her way towards them. Tedd and Grace let go of each other to help her.
"Ugh, what the hell, guys?“ was her greeting to them. She shook her head in an attempt to clear it but her gaze still seemed somewhat blurry.
"You okay, Ellen?“ Grace asked.
"I'm... fine. Whoa!“ she exclaimed as she reached the front of the roof and took a look at the surroundings as well. "What is this place? And how the hell did we get here from the front door of your house, Tedd?“
"No idea,“ Tedd said. "But let's try and find a shelter. We're freezing out here.“ He looked around, desperately searching for a place to start looking. "There's...“
"The sky!“ Grace suddenly cried.
All of their gazes shot upward.
"Feri usyug,“ Tedd murmured, unable to process the view above them.
There was no sky – at least none in the sense that he had ever seen or heard about it. Above them loomed a thick blanket of clouds, looking as solid as the stone they stood on, but in perpetual motion. Swelling and vanishing in and endless cycle. There seemed to be some kind of lightning inside of them, for the borders were constantly flashing which amplified the effect of fluctuation even more.
But what instantly caught their gazes was the vortex.
It seemed like a giant tunnel in the clouds, a copy of the gaping abyss in front of them, ripping through the pall and the heavens itself. It wasn't motionless either, but slowly and steadily turned and like an enormous maelstrom onto creation itself.
Tedd forgot for how long they stood there and watched the spectacle of the skies above them, but he finally snapped out of it, when the pain in his limbs overcame him again, pushing it's way back into his mind and demanding undivided attention to keep him from freezing to death where he stood.
"C'mon, we gotta go,“ he jittered through his teeth.
It took some shaking to break the mesmerizing hold, the view had over his friends, but finally they all marched off, huddled together closely to conserve warmth. Since they only wore clothes fit for a much warmer climate and no coats, him and Ellen were running out of time here.
"Where should we start looking?“ Ellen asked, looking around while hugging herself.
"I think I can make out a way off this roof over there,“ Tedd said and pointed to the right side.
There were indeed some stairs, carved into the rock, leading higher up the mountain, where other structures seemed to stand, barely visible in the mist.
"Wait, there's something on the floor!“ Grace exclaimed.
She hurried off to grab it and returned with an inconspicuous, black box, barely the size of her head.
The sight of this case suddenly brought back Tedd's memories in full force. How they came here and what a terrible fool he'd been.
"I'll take that. Now let's go,“ was all he said, for now was not the time to discuss these things. He could Ellen see biting back a question – the cold troubled her nearly as much as him – and follow him up the stairs and into the mist.


"It works!“ Tedd's exclamation was more a sigh of relief than anything.
He put down the small apparatus between them and held his hands over it.
Especially Ellen was quick to join him in soaking in the warmth, the generator emanated, while Grace was better protected from the fur coat, her squirrel form provided her with.
"Mmmm, sorry I questioned you for taking apart that little box that brought us here,“ Ellen apologized.
"Never mind,” Tedd wiped away their former argument with a hand gesture. “We couldn't use it to get home anyway. This way, at least we can survive the next hours.“
"Hours only?“ Grace, who was sitting next to Tedd, shielding him from the cold that came from outside, piped in.
"I won't lie to you,“ he explained grimly. "Our future looks bad. First of all, while I could potentially build this box back into it's former state, we couldn't power it up. This small generator I built from it will last years, but would take equally long to charge the energy necessary to fire up this strange alien device that brought us here.“
"Alien? You didn't mention that before?“ Ellen declared.
"Oh, what does it matter? It was in this huge crate, addressed to my dad. But now that I took it apart it, most of it doesn't look like any piece of human or uryuom technology I've ever seen.“
"Huge crate? I didn't even see that, when I took a quick look through the door.“
"No? Well, must've blown up then, as it threw me across the room,“ Tedd explained and winced slightly as Grace carefully brushed over the bruises on his head.
Ellen sigh. "You're right, it doesn't matter. Let's focus on getting back.“
"Well, that's the catch. We need energy. And a lot of it. And we don't have much time, since we don't have any food. Water should be accessible, but this little generator won't keep us warm forever.“
"Then we should explore these ruins. This building may be empty, but others may not,“ Ellen said.
"Grace, are you warm enough to explore outside?“ Tedd asked her.
"Sure, I'm more or less comfortable, here. I mixed the squirrel form with the winter coat of an arctic lynx,“ she explained.
"Where did you...“ Ellen started to say.
"Don't ask,“ Tedd cut her short with a little smile. "Anyway, you, Ellen, might want to take a look at the inside of these buildings. We haven't been far in yet, there may be things on the lower levels.“
"Right,“ Ellen nodded. "You'll be okay here, Tedd?“
"Not that I have much choice,“ he shrugged. "But I'm of best use staying here and analyzing more parts of this box. It will be tricky, since I don't want to shut it down again, or I'll freeze off my fingers, but I'll manage. You two don't go too far, though. I don't think anything lives here, but that impression might be deceiving.“
Grace gave him a warm kiss before standing up, then the two girls set out to explore, while Tedd started to cudgel his brain over the alien tech in front of him.


The interior of the building they found didn't really earn that name. Wherever Ellen went, somewhere daylight pierced through to the corridors and halls. While it was handy to not wander in the dark, that also meant that it was exactly as cold in here as outside. She brought her hands up in front of her face and breathed onto them, feeling the slight reflection of warmth on her face and congratulated herself over and over for picking the long-sleeve vest this morning.
If the circumstances were any different she would have enjoyed exploring these ruins immensely. The corridors she walked and the huge halls were a beautiful sight. The craftsmanship on every single stone were of intricate detail and the ice that covered everything added his own charm to the picture. However, the mental image of the three of them, lying dead in one of these corridors, covered with frost, was not one to enjoy for Ellen.
She entered another hall, the biggest she had found so far. Two great, cantilevered flights of stairs ran down from the balcony where she had come in to the ground below.
At least it's not slippery here, Ellen thought, though she had no idea why this ice wasn't as slick as it should be. But it made her progress far easier, especially since she picked up the pace on her tour to generate more warmth.
In the middle of the floor stood an altar of stone, akin to all the other furniture she had seen so far. Ellen went to examine it closer, but before she reached the tabular monolith, a change of light caught her eye.
The bars of light, that entered through the dome-like ceiling grew brighter, the contours of the shadows became clearer, their core seemingly deeper.
She twirled around and gazed through the rifts to the sky. Something was going on there. Suddenly the light brightened a hundredfold, and another thousandfold in the next second. With a cry of surprise Ellen could only shield her eyes and look away from the sudden pillar of light, that had pierced the sky. She tried to get back into a part of the room where no light reached, but before she did her second step, the ground shook violently. Just once, but once too often for her to keep her balance. She toppled down backwards her head hitting the stony stair in front of the altar with great precision.


Grace was on her way back from one of the higher located structures, when she noticed the change of light. A quick glance to the maelstrom in the sky confirmed this. Some new light glowed in there. Slightly pulsating, but steadily gaining strength, it seemed to her. Something happened, and as she couldn't determine if it was good or bad for them, she better hurried up to tell Tedd about this new phenomenon.
The steep stairs were no problem for her squirrel sense of balance, but the spectacle in the sky was distractingly beautiful. But it also felt dangerous. Like powers far, far beyond her comprehension. Powers that could crush a little squirrel-girl like her in the blink of an eye without even noticing.
She quickened her steps. The faster she got back to Tedd, the better.
But then the light steadily brightened. Slow at first but soon it had accumulated the intensity of a small sun. Mesmerized, Grace watched as a bright pillar of light shot out of the vortex. It was like of a comet of light, so bright that it stung her eyes, yet she just could not look away as it made it's way down into the abyss, all the way losing none of it's intensity. The blue trail behind it seemed to eradiate a cold that she could feel all those hundreds of meters away and through her thick fur.
Then the meteor struck and the world around her seemed to shake in it's foundation.
The ground below Grace seemed to jerk a full meter back and before she knew what happened she was falling free over the edge. It happened so abrupt that she needed a moment to realize her sudden predicament. But moments are rare if you are in free fall towards a deadly impact.
She had to levitate! Fly! But she needed her omega form to do that and morphing would take too much time. The ground below her just wasn't far enough away for that to be possible. But what could she do?! She was a squirrel! She had a bushy tail and claws to climb. All she needed was something to grab! Twisting and turning in mid air she desperately tried to get close enough to that damned rock wall to grab something, but she was still half an arm's length away. Too far! The ground came closer and closer. No! She didn't want to die, it shot through her head, her heart hammering wildly. She didn't want to! Instinctively she tried pushing the ground away, like a child pushing something, that offended it, away with it's arms.
Only that Grace had done that with subconsciously using her telekinesis.
For several seconds she hovered over the stone, before the thought that she still lived finally filtered through her panicked mind and registered.
She let go of her telekinetic push and dropped down gracefully like a squirrel hopping down from a branch.
Absentmindedly, she noticed how weak her legs were. This stunt had taken a lot out of her, but she lived! She lived! She wanted to laugh, to celebrate, to hug somebody, but all she could do was sit down and pant, waiting for her heart to stop racing.
For several minutes she didn't move or think except for listening to her own breathing, glad about the simple fact that she was still able to draw breath!
Then she started to survey her new situation. From the look of it, she was further down, as when they first had arrived in this strange, arctic place. She had quite a bit of track in front of her to get back to her friends.
After some more minutes of calming down, she took off. As on every roof, there was a stairway carved into the rock next to it. But it would prove kind of a problem to keep her directions here. This whole complex was of immense size and all those stairs that connected the outer parts where everything but lineal. They twisted and bent, split up and merged with other paths all the way through the hillside. And those paths were never fully visible, but often hidden behind other structures or simply the stone they were carved into. Oh well, she would worry about that, when she got there.
A few minutes climbing – on all fours, since it was so steep – later, her senses caught on to something new. A presence, she had not felt before. And looking back, she saw them. From the depths of the abyss, from the place the meteor struck, they rose into the air. Countless small lights, burning in foul, seemingly toxic blue colors.
In a slow seesaw dance they ascended from the valley and spread out without an apparent pattern over the whole hillside.
Grace could not say why, but this spectacle of lights sent cold shivers down her spine. These vile colors, this mesmerizing dance, like a coiled snake rising, ready to strike...
Without a further look back she started to climb.


##############################################################################################################################


Chapter 2 – The Cold Inside The Sun

“Graaaaaaaaace!” Tedd shouted on top of his lungs.
No response.
He slumped down in a sitting position on the top of the stairs that led up the the building they currently inhabited. He was out of energy to call out, out of energy to think.
He had come out here after this sudden trembling of the ground, hoping to find her, to make sure she was safe, but without luck.
Freezing cold closed in on him again, strengthening the constant shaking of his hands even more, with the warmth emanating generator left inside. Tedd knew he would have to get back in eventually. He'd have to trust Grace to find her way back alone. Trust in her strengths.
But what if the sudden earthquake had swept her off those small, winding paths and ... no! He must not continue that thoughts. She lived. She had to. She was powerful enough to take care of herself, Tedd repeated over and over in his head.
Then he saw the lights rising up from below. Like a swarm of fireflies, but – as everything in this frozen hell – they were colored in cold, blue hues.
Tedd followed their ascent with mild curiosity, the spectacle serving to distract him a tiny little bit from his concern about Grace. Did the earthquake open up some deep caverns, thus freeing those lights? Or were they somehow connected to the brightness he believed seeing shortly before the tremor?
Slowly the swarm spread out over the whole hillside, some also coming in his direction.
His body urged Tedd to go back inside, to his warm generator, before he froze off his limbs, but he stayed put, eager to get a closer looks as these strange lights. After all, it might even be possible for this to be of some help to them in their task to get back home.
Tantalizing slowly one of the lights closed in on him. It moved in a seemingly drunken zigzag course, but still did never go fully astray from the path towards him. It was much bigger than a firefly, Tedd realized. Nearly the size of his hand. And it wasn't just a light. Beyond the glowing blue aura seemed to be something tangible, but it was in constant motion.
Tedd stood up and carefully raised an arm towards it. But suddenly he recoiled.
He came just close enough to feel the pure cold, that this... thing was emanating. It was a chill so intense that even his jaded sense of temperature could distinguish it as easily from the surroundings as a towering campfire from a tiny candle. Touching this creature would mean a cold and painful death.
Horrified, he took several steps back. But it followed him. Slowly, but steadily. And did he err or had this thing really lost some of his drunken flying and got... more determined in his path towards him?
Cursing under his breath, Tedd wheeled around and ran back inside. What a fool he had been again! These ice sprites must be able to sense heat! And the only source of heat whatsoever in this whole landscape must be him and his friends.
Looking back over his shoulder, he saw the creature hovering around the entrance, but not yet following him – or at least not fast. Time to pack up and look for a better hiding spot, he decided, since the little corner of the room, where they stored the generator, was just next to the corridor leading to the entrance of the building.
The only other exit of this room however, was the one Ellen took, when she started to look deeper into the structure. Tedd hurried to pick up the alien tech box in his arms, without bending any of the now open lying parts.
Ellen should have been back by now too, he thought. Hopefully, she was okay as well. The tremor didn't seem to have collapsed any buildings, but there were tons of other accidents that could have happened. What if she fell down a flight of stairs and was now unconscious? With those ice sprites hovering around...
A high-pitched scream echoed through the long corridors, interrupting his train of thought and piercing his heart with yet another cold needle of fear.
The Apparatus clutched to his chest, Tedd started running.


Fatigue finally overwhelmed Grace and she slumped down against the corridor wall. Heart racing, breath coming in surges, she nearly burned herself out to reach the entrance. But she couldn't stay here. Those lights were after her. No time to stay still.
Whole swarms of them had descended on her, when she was climbing the stairs outside. Grace had instinctively felt the danger that they posed, and had tried to avoid them as good as possible, but they were everywhere! In the end she had had to use her telekinesis again to open an escape route through the deadly net of frost, they spun around her. But that nearly overexerted her and there was no way she could continue those steep stairways up the hill.
She was lucky enough though, to find this entrance in the rock wall. A little shelter where the hordes of blue lights hopefully could not block her path again, she thought.
But they closed in again. Grace felt them. She felt a chill in her bones, even when the cold could not harm her in her thick winter fur. She had to keep moving, or they would find her again.
Pushing herself up on all fours again, trying to mobilize reservoirs of strength she had never tapped before in her life, Grace continued her way along the stone corridor.
As the path before her branched off, she chose the way that went up, as she was still below the level where she had left Tedd hours ago.
Still exhausted beyond measure and beyond mental threshold, she let the squirrel inside her take over her actions, let her instincts guide her path upwards through the twisting maze of hallways and passages.
She didn't know how much time had passed, when finally something appeared in her field of vision, that strongly addressed the human part in her again.
“Ellen!”
Her friend lay motionless on the floor, her head on a step, as if she was sleeping. But was she? Ellen wouldn't just lie down to sleep on this cold floor, would she?
Quickly, Grace fell on her knees beside her friend and tried to wake her. It took some effort, but finally she opened her eyes.
Her gaze was still somewhat glassy though and Grace wasn't sure if Ellen really saw her.
“Ellen, are you alright?”
Ellen's lips formed a tiny smile, but Grace wasn't convinced.
“C'mon, Ellen, talk to me.”
A soft answer, too quiet to be intelligible.
“What?” Grace bowed down over her to hear better.
“So nice lights,” Ellen repeated.
Everything happened at once.
Grace – who had just pushed back her squirrel senses in face of the distress of her friend – took the cue to listen inward. And screamed out in pure horror, as her formerly muted senses instantly told her about the proximity of one of those terrifying lights.
Jumping back up on her feet, she felt the cold brush of death over her head and winced as her ears and antennae got covered in stinging frost. Panic washed over her, shut down her rational thinking and let her spin around and take flight towards the other end of the room, as far away from that light as possible.
Her human part, buried under those sudden primal instincts shouted at her to turn around, to help Ellen, but she couldn't heed it. The terror she felt was way too great to even consider turning around.
But without you, she is doomed, screamed the rational part of her mind.
Calm down, Grace, calm down. Pull yourself together. You're far away and out of danger.
Slowly, the words oozed through the panicked layers of her mind and quieted her racing squirrel heart. Step by step, she was able to regain control of her body, and push back her overexcited rodent senses. Ellen needed her. She was still strong enough to push away that one light, was she not? Had she not panicked... hopefully it wasn't too late yet, she thought, and raced back into the hall. She hadn't even consciously registered leaving it moments before.
It wasn't too late. The light hovered halfway between the entrance where she stood and Ellen, who was still lying on her back in the middle of the room.
“Ellen, stand up!” Grace yelled. “You have to get up now!”
She choose a roundabout path over the side of the room, trying to stay as far away from the light as possible, still fearing it, but now in control of her primal flight instinct.
“Ellen!” she repeated emphatically.
“Grace!” that call came from above, from one of the balconies which were half way up towards the dome-like ceiling.
“Tedd!” she answered, overjoyed to hear his voice. “Come down here quick! We have to get Ellen out of here.”
He was on his way before she had finished the sentence.


Tedd never took his eyes off the single ice sprite that hovered between Ellen and his girlfriend, while he sprinted down the stairway. One against the three of them and yet they were helpless to defend themselves safe for running away.
“Stay were you are, Grace!” he called out, wanting her to keep the deadly creature confused by the two heat sources at equal range.
“Uh-okay!”
“I'll get her!” Once he reached the end of the stairs, he put down the opened black generator and hurried to pick up Ellen.
She seemed awake, followed him with his eyes but seemed to be unable to come to the decision to stand up. Or could she not?
“Are you hurt?” Tedd asked, when he reached her, trying to figure out what exactly was wrong. He only had seconds until the ice sprite would descend upon them, he knew.
Ellen smiled but didn't respond otherwise.
Blasted, Tedd thought and carefully started propping her up into a sitting position. He had no idea how he should manage the feat of getting her to stand up, much less flee from the room with them.
Ellen murmured something when her head dropped on her chest, once she was sitting upright and slowly made some weak movements as if to clear her head.
“C'mon, Ellen, time to get up now,” Tedd kept talking to her, trying to get some support from her side, while he threw one of her arms across his shoulders and tried to stand up.
“Tedd, the light!” came a sudden warning from Grace.
He felt the sudden icy chill that emanated from the tiny creature, but he could not dive away. Not without abandoning Ellen to her certain death!
“Gaaah, I can't...”
“Off!” Grace yelled and to Tedd's never ending surprise, the sprite shot upwards like it had been hit by a hammer from below.
“Grace, how...?” he saw her staggering for a moment, but then she straightened herself again.
“Tele-...kinesis,” she gasped. “But it's taking... too much energy. ... Hurry now!”
The ice sprite was hovering around the ceiling, but Tedd was still alone in his task to get up Ellen. Grace could hardly stand on her legs, much less help him lift their friend.
So he grabbed the hand of the arm, that was already draped across his shoulders and tried to get a firm stand on the floor before trying to hoist her up.
At first it seemed useless, she was just too heavy for that bit of lever action that he could create with his strength. But finally she started to help him, started pushing up from the floor on her own and together they managed to stand up.
“Grace, get the generator, please. It's over there, by the stairs.” Tedd made a directive head motion towards it. “And then let's get out of here.”
He steered towards one of the doors on ground level, that looked safe so far.
“Wha'..? Where are we going?” Ellen mumbled.
“Some place safe,” Tedd said. “How you feeling?”
“Groggy... would be... the word, ...I think.”
“Just keep walking and we'll make it,” Tedd reassured her. “Grace?”
“I'm here!”
“Can you hop ahead and look for a good room to stay? You're still quicker than us right now.”
“All right!”
The hallway led them continuously upwards with no end in sight. The march got tiring quickly but lucky for them, Ellen also recovered with great speed now. Soon she was able to walk without help.
“So the last thing I remember was this bright light. No idea what knocked me out.”
“I'd wager a guess and say the little earthquake. You must've hit your head.”
Ellen brushed over the back of her head carefully and winced. “Yeah, that'd be a save guess,” she said.
“We'll have a look at that later. After we find a safer place.”
“How are our chances now?”
“Slim, but better, I think. I found something in this box, that might help us, if I'm right. But I need time to figure it out, and time is what we don't have here!”
“Psh, we'll have enough. You can sleep over it, while we take turns keeping watch and...”
“You don't get it, Ellen!” Tedd exclaimed. “If we lie down to sleep in this place, we'll never wake up ag-YEAAAAARGH!!” He made a sudden jump forward, as something incredible cold brushed his calf for a split second.
“Tedd! What...” Ellen spun around and saw the tiny light that hovered behind them at level of their feet. Without thinking she blasted it away with a V5-beam. It tumbled back down the corridor.
Tedd had fallen on the floor and could only pant wildly. His whole lower left leg was in searing agony. “Gaaaah, get if off! GET IT OFF,” he screamed.
Ellen quickly surveyed the leg. There was a hole burned into the pants in the middle of his calf and the flesh below looked black.
“There... there's nothing there anymore, Tedd. It's gone now,” she tried to comfort him.
“Gods, IT FUCKIN HURTS!” Tedd yelled while squirming in acute pain. “Get... get me... to the gen.... HURRY!” He tried to formulate his thoughts, which wasn't easy.
“Right, come on, maybe I can carry you,” Ellen said and rolled him over on his back to pick him up.
Tedd nearly didn't notice his surroundings anymore. One fleeting contact with this thing had been enough to cause a pain so excruciate, as he could never have imagined. And he knew that he was lucky to still be alive.
Grunting, Ellen managed to lift him up.
“Shit, how could that happen,” she murmured while nervously glancing back over her shoulder. Tedd had explained to her that one felt those lights from a meter away at least and that they didn't move fast. Yet she, standing next to him, had felt nothing while it even got close enough to touch him. She shuddered as she looked at her whimpering friend in her arms.
She wanted to comfort him, to say that all would be well... but she couldn't find the words. How could they possibly ease his pain in this forsaken place? How could she say there was hope, when she couldn't find it herself?
Cursing under her breath she pushed herself forward and hoped that Grace wasn't too far yet. But if she hadn't heard the yelling up to now, it would be a waste of breath to try and call out to her. This place was so awfully huge.
Eons seemed to have passed, when she finally reached even ground again.
“Grace! Where are you?” Ellen called.
“Over here!” It came from one of the rooms to the right.
Grace nearly bumped into Ellen when she came over the doorstep.
“Tedd! Oh no, what happened?”
“Something... got him.” Ellen wheezed, while carefully putting him down next to the small black box who was set up in one of the corners of the room. “One of those lights. Smaller however. I could blast it away, but still...”
Tedd seemed to be at least half-conscious of his surroundings since he immediately began feeling his way towards the quietly humming generator.
“Oh, Tedd, what can we do to help you?” Grace sobbed with tears in her eyes over seeing her boyfriend in such pain.
“I... got this...” he coughed through gritted teeth.
Ellen wasn't sure how Tedd could see something, his tears should blind him, but still his fingers worked on the box, stripping wires here and there and pulling out other things even with his hands shaking rather badly.
The girls could only sit and watch in anxious silence, while he worked as fast as he could.
“Roll down... the turn-up... on that leg.”
They gladly obeyed, happy to be able to do at least something for their friend.
“Need... to sit up straight.”
Grace helped to prop him higher against the wall, keeping a comforting hand on his shoulder for silent support.
They watched as Tedd twisted some small plates and wires through his turn-ups before motioning to Ellen to roll it up again. Then, sucking in his breath – this was obviously even more painful – he pulled it up until it was on one level with his wound.
“Third and fifth,” he murmured to himself, while bending the end of two wires over the generator.
“Third ... and... god-DAMNIT, I'M SHAKING TOO MUCH TO PUT IT IN!” he suddenly had to vent his frustration and pain again.
“Where do you need it?” Grace was quick to ask.
“There's... ughn... a row of ten... this to the third... other... yeargh.... fifth... counting from left.” He panted faintly.
Once Grace had the wires connected, Tedd flipped a hidden switch inside the box.
Seconds later the wires started glowing in a faint red and a bit of steam rose from his left calf.
It took several minutes, but Ellen observed Tedd's breath finally coming slower and steadier again.
“Ahhh,” he said. “Seems like I didn't miscalculate after all.”
“What do you mean?” Grace asked.
“If those sockets would have been wrong, it just might have burned away my flesh instead of just heating the point.”
“So that's what you did now.”
“Yes, it... feels like there's still something in there. And it's still cold and spreading.”
“Spreading???” his girlfriend gasped.
“No more. The heat keeps it in check for now.”
“Wow, how did you know that?” Ellen had to ask.
“I didn't.” Tedd laughed, but it was without joy or passion. His friends had never heard such a laughter from him. “But what chances did I have except to try the obvious? It'll hold up for now, but it takes up half of the energy of the generator, so there's less heat for you at the moment.”
“It's no big deal,” Ellen claimed. “At least you won't loose your leg or something.”
“Not yet. But – as I said – we sure as hell won't survive a single night here. Now more than ever.”
Grace cuddled up closer to him.
“You said, you had an idea,” Ellen reminded him. “Will that still work?”
“Maybe. And for that matter, don't use your beam again, except in grave danger.”
“Huh? Why is that?”
“We'll need it later. And you won't regenerate any energy necessary for doing so in this place. Not without food or sleep.”
“I see. Can we help you?”
“Not really. But you can check outside. Maybe try to get some water. And have a look at that wound of your's, Ellen,” he decided.
“But we can't let you alone in here,” Grace exclaimed. “You can't even run away now, if they find this room!”
“I'll be fine,” Tedd said. “Now go, there's no time to loose for us!”
“But..”
“Go!”


##############################################################################################################################


Chapter 3 – Fear Of The Dark

“Okay, looks clear,” Ellen observed.
“Then let's hurry, I don't want to leave Tedd alone in there for too long,” Grace said, glancing back over her shoulder.
They had found the way to a roof outside, not far from the room where they had left him.
“Me neither, but I guess he has his reasons. Now let's see...”
They stepped out the entrance and looked around for snow to turn into drinkable water.
“E-Ellen...”
“Yes?”
“When... back in that room where we found you unconscious. I...”
Ellen turned around, seeing Grace just standing there, shaking.
“Grace, what's the matter?”
“I... I... I nearly abandoned you!” she suddenly sobbed, burying her face behind hands and antennae.
“What are you talking about? You never...”
“Yes I did! I... I found you first in that room, lying there as if you were sleeping. I tried to wake you, but... but than that light... it must've come through the ceiling... but suddenly it was so close! I panicked and ran away! If... if it hadn't followed me, you wouldn't have had a chance. It took me so long to regain control over myself, I... I abandoned you,” she ended.
Ellen needed a moment to process that. She didn't remember that whole scene at all. But then she hurried up to walk over to her friend and pull her in a comforting hug.
“It's okay, Grace, I'm still alive. It's pretty easy to panic in this place, is it not?”
“But.. but... oh, Ellen! I nearly let you die! Just... just like back then, when... when Damien killed all those people.”
“Oh please, don't start with Damian again now. You were a little kid back then. Please stop beating yourself up over that.”
“But I'm not now! And I still couldn't control myself! I... I was even aware of the fact that I was leaving you... there was a voice in my head that told me to turn around... but... but I just couldn't do it. The other part telling me to flee was so much stronger!”
“Other part, huh? I guess that would be your squirrel instinct. It's okay, Grace, you cannot change that.”
“But... but maybe I should change form into something else then?”
“What else? Something that has no flight instinct? Like that arctic lynx who knows no predators, only prey? What if that instead triggered an urge to attack those... things. Trust me, if you charged into them instead of running away... that would be a lot worse.”
Grace kept silent.
“You regained control back then, I'm sure you can do so again, Grace. I trust you.”
“O-okay. Thank you, Ellen!”
“It's nothing... but now let's better hurry up and do what we came here to do. I want to get back to the warm generator and I'm feeling rather exposed out here one way or another now.”
They started looking around the roof for snow. In the rifts between the carved and the natural stone, in every edge and corner. They found next to nothing.
“Damn it, there must be something!” Ellen exclaimed, looking over the valley towards the mountains on the other side, which glinted in snowy white.
“Not even enough that I could pick it up without the whole of it getting lost in my fur,” Grace said depressed.
“Maybe some icicles...” Ellen looked towards the entrance, where several of them hung from the ornate stones.
She broke one off and enclosed it in her bare hands.
“...the hell?”
“What?”
“It's... melting... but look at this. My hand doesn't even get wet a bit.”
“So it's not made of water?”
“Seems like it. Damn, no water supply here. And I was really getting thirsty now too.” She threw the rests of the icicles on the ground. “C'mon, Grace, let's get back inside,” she decided, trying to sound not too down herself.


As soon as the girls had left the room, Tedd dropped his stern facade. He didn't want to see them, how things really were. He didn't want Grace to worry over his pain that they could not ease. Worrying wouldn't help them at all, it would just make their time – maybe their last hours alive – even more uncomfortable.
Tedd needed a moment to fight back the jolts of pain, shooting from this leg through his whole body. The cold did indeed not spread anymore, but it didn't go away either. He pushed away the thoughts about whether he would ever be able to walk again without limping. There would be enough time to worry about such things in the unlikely case that they survived.
Time to try and make that happen, he decided and scooped the small, black box up in his lap.
This thing was frustratingly strange. He found mechanisms so absurd that it should never, ever work – and yet it did. It was the work of a genius and Tedd was sure he was about to decipher it, if only he had enough time to think about it!
He went back to work on the most important part, something he called the magic energy accumulator. If his theory was right, a few beams from Ellen might be enough to charge this thing enough for them to get out of here again. If only he could get it to work with nothing but the screwdriver that he always kept in his pocket.
Several quiet minutes passed. But then something changed.
Tedd felt the hairs on his neck suddenly standing up. Somebody... was there.
He looked up and concentrated on listening. Nothing. Everything was quiet as usual. No sounds apart from his own breath.
He had both entrances and all windows of the room in his sight without having to turn his head. Nothing could enter without him noticing.
And yet he couldn't shake that feeling. The feeling of being watched.
Unnerved and unable to concentrate on his work, Tedd slowly stood up. Maybe a look into the corridors outside would help. Limping around like that increased the throbbing pain in his left leg ten times over but he couldn't help that now. Generator in his hands – since the wires had to keep being tied to his calf – he moved to one door.
He went to check the way they had come from – empty. Not a single light, nor anything else. Going back to the room he started to get mad about himself now. What was he doing here, hunting ghosts when he should be working on their only hope of survival? Oh well, now that he was up anyway he might as well take a look down the other hallway as well, where the girls had gone off to search for water.
Nothing – of course. What had he- Tedd froze mid-thought. Suddenly he keenly felt the temperature in the room dropping. With a queasy feeling, he turned around. He knew what he was gonna see before he finished turning. The faint reflections on the fair stone next to him gave it away.
They were here. Tens and dozens of them! Floating in through the windows.
Tedd wanted to turn and flee, but something made him – against all rational thought – stop. Something was different here. The ice sprites didn't float towards him, they just gathered in the middle of the room. It was a mass big enough to make him feel the cold over full five meters away. Everything in him screamed to run for his life – yet he couldn't! Helplessly he watched the mesmerizing display, as an endless stream of lights floated in through the two windows, while his queasy feeling steadily increased. Something happened here – something so far beyond his imagination that he could only fear it. But then why couldn't he run away? He wanted to! He desperately tried to move, but his legs would not move a single muscle and he could not take his eyes off the hive that gathered here in a whirling cloud.
Then – without any change in the scene before him – the odd feeling of being watched increased beyond anything Tedd had ever imagined. It was no feeling anymore, it was certainty.
Tedd's heart suddenly was in his mouth, he felt cold sweat running down his cheeks and his back. There was a presence here, not in this room but all around him!
It didn't feel hostile – it felt strange. So alien that Tedd's mind was about to break under the impressions from his senses. The foreignness exceeded anything a human being was able to cope with. It's mere existence defied nature.
And then it took form. Suddenly Tedd realized, what brought all those lights here, as the whirling cloud started taking shape. A human shape.
Glowing brightly in a myriad of blues, emanating a cold that resisted description and let Tedd's breath freeze in front of his eyes, covering his hair and cloth with icy crystals, the figure stood in the middle of the room.
Tedd could not possibly believe what he saw. This was... a perversion of mankind. This creature taking a humanoid shape, while being as different from humanity as anyhow possible! It was plain wrong on every level imaginable!
Tedd felt his entrails clenching. The feeling of foreignness didn't decrease one bit with the source of terror having a distinct form. He felt like his innermost soul was bared before this unspeakable being. It was pure mental anguish.
And all of a sudden, it was gone.
With a gasp, Tedd staggered backwards, through the door frame and against the hallway wall.
Panting like he had just run a marathon, he felt like able to draw breath for the first time in minutes. Just now he realized, how back-breaking the presence had lasted upon him.
And with the presence gone, so was everything, that kept the ice sprites in control! They had instantly begun to spread out and many of them were already coming close to the door.
With a yelp, and ignoring the burning pain in his calf, he pushed himself up from the floor and limped down the corridor as fast as he could, the generator still clutched with his left hand. But the strain let him see shooting-stars in front of his eyes. Tedd knew he was pushing himself beyond the limits of his body, but it couldn't be helped. His lungs were burning with pain – not from a lack of air, but from the debilitating cold he had just suffered in this room. The air out here, while still hovering below zero, he guessed, felt warm in comparison!
Hopefully he'd reach his friends before collapsing.
He ran into them after the next bend.
“Ooff, Tedd! What-” Ellen stopped mid-sentence, noticing the horrid look in his eyes.
Grace instantly was at his side, preventing him from toppling down.
“It's no longer safe back there,” Tedd could only breathe faintly. He looked up at Ellen, who gazed over his shoulder, down the corridor, and saw her expression fill with terror.
“We gotta run!” she yelled! “C'mon, Grace, we both have to support Tedd,” she instructed and threw his other arm over her shoulder, while holding on to the tech box herself.
Tedd was more dragged between them, that he could run himself with his one leg. He didn't even have to ask what exactly Ellen saw. He carried the image of the whole swarm of lights still vividly in his mind.
“Damn, was there another branch-off in the corridors?” Ellen asked to no one in particular. “We can't run into a dead end now!”
“I don't think so,” said Grace fearfully.
They came around another bend and stood before the roof where Ellen and Grace had just returned from. They stopped.
“There's no stairs here, is there?” Ellen asked.
They looked around. Nothing.
That moment, Tedd felt it again. It had returned.
“Gaah!” Grace yelled, pointing towards the door where they had come from.
A whole hive of lights had come into sight, flying in unison like a swarm of deadly birds.
They had them cornered.
The three friends backed away towards the front ledge of the platform. There was no way to run anymore. The lights came out of the door and spread out. They moved as one, steered by a greater mind. And Tedd knew it. He felt the presence at the border of his consciousness. And from the look in her eyes, he knew that Grace did so too, with her keener senses.
“Shit. Maybe we can - “ Ellen turned around, but there was only the abyss below them. Nowhere to run.
“Tedd? Can that device help us now?” she asked, not letting her eyes off the net of lights that slowly closed it.
“No, it's not working properly yet! I didn't have the time to...”
“Well, fuck that, we'll still have to try it now!”
“Right, I'll..”
And presence manifested around them.
Ellen, who had not sensed it before, was instantly overwhelmed by the foreignness, her senses confronted her with. She slapped her hands against her temples and fell down on her knees in a futile attempt to shake it off.
Grace clawed her hands so hard into Tedd's arm that it hurt, otherwise virtually frozen in fear.
Tedd realized that if he didn't do anything, they would be paralyzed in fear until the lights got to them. But was there anything he could do? The seconds they had were never enough to complete the work on the tech. But as Ellen said – they still had to try.
He dropped on his knees next to Ellen, taking the box out of her hands and setting it down on the floor. She was still squirming with her whole body, trying to defy the presence that surrounded them, but of course there was no winning this battle. It would have been easier to defy a thunderstorm, while lightning struck all around you.
“T-Tedd...” Grace whimpered on the other side.
Tedd had a hard time resisting the reflex to turn around and protect and comfort her. He had only seconds left.
He set up the box and pulled off the plate from his calf. It would now be needed elsewhere. Instantly the cold in his leg multiplied, but it was a mere inconvenience, since the air all around him grew constantly colder, temperatures dropping like a stone down a bottomless pit.
It took him three tries to pull the wires out and reset them into other sockets, his hands shaking worse than ever. But he only had one try. All or nothing.
“C'mon, Ellen!” he shouted at her. “Blast this plate now!”
She could only scream in mental agony.
They were running out of time, the lights only meters away. Soon they would feel the deadly chill of their auras.
“Blasted, Ellen, do it!” He forcefully took down one of her hands and pointed it on the small metal plate, lying on the floor.
“Ellen!” He tried again, desperate, and slapped her in the face to get her attention.
The weight of the alien presence, the desperation of their situation, it all bore down on him.
But finally, Ellen seemed to come to her senses. She looked at him, looked down at the small plate and loosed her energy-beam.
Nothing happened.
“No! Try it again! With more force!”
She did, but the box stayed dead.
She looked back up at Tedd. “It's okay, Tedd. You tried.” Resignation behind her voice.
He only shook his head, unable to accept it. With a stiff movement, as his limbs were close to freezing, he scooped up the small plate and looked at it reproachfully. He had failed them.
In a last movement of defiance against the certain, cold death, he flung the blasted thing into the mass of ice sprites.
Instantly, the wires began to glow white, the box lightened up, released a soft Thumph! and Tedd's world went black.


Stars. Countless twinkling lights. Peaceful and far, far away. It was a clear and warm night.
Ellen wanted nothing more than to keep lying on her back and drift back to sleep. She felt more exhausted than ever in her whole life. But some little part of her mind didn't stop bugging her. Was she dead? Was this the after-life? Where were the others?
“Ugh, guys?” she asked weakly and noticed how rough her voice sounded.
Oh, what did it matter where she was?
“What? Ellen?” That was Tedd's voice.
Now Ellen did sit up straight. Looking around, she realized they were lying on the front lawn of his house.
“We're... back?” She had almost a little fear to speak it out, scared that it was just an illusion.
“Yeah.... seems like it,” he said. He sat up too and looked around, only to be knocked back down on the grass a second later by Grace.
“Hehehe, ah, Grace, stop... heh!”
After they had somewhat calmed down in their we're-still-alive-joy, Ellen asked: “What happened?”
“Well,” Tedd mused, “your beam didn't work for some reason. Maybe it was too weak for this task. I don't really know. But then I chucked the accumulator plate into the sprites and that somehow did work...”
“You don't know why?”
“No, I... wait. Urgh, of course! They were magical creatures! And their auras must've brimmed with magical energy. Oh boy, I wouldn't have thought to test that in a hundred years!”
“No kidding!” Ellen said, shaking her head. “But there is something else.” She shuddered slightly. “That... strange presence... you know what that was?”
“No,” Tedd said. “And honestly? I don't want to think about it either.”
“Yeah, let's not think about that,” Grace agreed wholeheartedly.
For a moment they sat in silence, soaking in the warmth of the night and the pleasure of still being alive.
“C'mon guys,” Ellen finally said, “let's go inside. I don't want the others to worry about us longer than necessary.”
“You got a point there,” Tedd agreed while he and Grace also stood up.
“Wait, there's the tech box!” he said and picked it up. “Looks burned. Thank the gods it brought us back here.”
“Umm, we are in the right dimension, aren't we?” Grace chipped in.
They all looked at each other for a moment, shocked by the possible implications.
But before anybody could speak, the front door opened and Mr. Verres stepped out.
“Where the heck have you three been?” was his greeting. “Tedd, you're limping! What happened?”
“Gods, Tedd, I nearly forgot about your leg, is it-?” Ellen exclaimed.
“Don't worry, the cold is gone. That magic can't have an effect in this world, it seems. But some damage was already done, I guess.”
His father was only shaking his head and said: “Come on in, you all look like you could need some rest!”
That was a call, that none of them would have been able to resist.
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Ineluki
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Re: [FANFIC] Frost (completed 2008/06/29)

Postby Proginoskes on Fri Aug 22, 2008 7:09 am

Ineluki, it's probably too late to entice you to write more by giving you some constructive criticism, but I feel compelled to do so anyways.
I have read two out of thirty-one pages, and all the real errors so far are fairly minor, especially if English is your second language. Never the less, I remind you to watch tenses in lists of verbs (to say "Ellen's form seemed to bulge and bent" isn't allowed; you probably want "Ellen's form seemed to bulge, then bend" or possibly "seemed to bulge and bend") and to pay attention to homonyms ("week" isn't an adjective; even if it was, Tedd's gestures under any circumstances would have very little to do with seven consecutive days. You want "weak").
She had only made two steps towards the front door, as it swung open, and Tedd fell through backwards.
"As" can't be used like this in English. You want "when".
the dump throbbing in his forehead instantly exploded into burning agony.
Tedd has a dump in his forehead? :lol: You wanted "dull" there, right? Don't worry too much about this kind of thing; I pride myself on my mastery of the English language, and I have done something similar more times than I could count. Just make sure you pass any manuscript by at least two other people before sending it to the publisher. No reasonable person would make a big deal out of it, but from what I hear, publishers aren't well known for being reasonable.
Something had incrusted his his lids.
Crust is like courage: "encourage", "encrust". "Encrust" never takes a direct object either; either something had encrusted on his eyelids or something had encrusted over his eyelids. Finally (for this bit), watch the word doubling. Everybody does it, but that doesn't mean anybody should.
The floor he was lying on covered by a thin layer of ice, with only few holes in it's fair surface.
I suspect some Lost In Translation here. English uses "fair" as a colour adjective only for the attributes of people: fair hair, fair skin, and suchlike. For anything else, "fair" can only mean "just" or "giving no hidden advantage": fair dice, fair scales, fair enforcement of the rules, and so on. For ice, you'd want "pale". Also, this is extremely minor, but "hole" is generally assumed to mean something as deep as it is wide. "Gap" is probably more appropriate here.

Now that the technical problems are out of the way, on to STYLE! The two pages I've read are borderline purple prose: you use many long words where fewer shorter words would do just as well. This puts off many people, possibly because they instinctively suspect the author of trying to conceal faults in characterisation, plot, or setting with flowery diction. I'm not accusing you of this, and they probably aren't even aware of why they went "Eh, I'll read it later", then never do. I suspect that this is why you have received such a small number of reviews: people came, saw purple prose, and gave up after the first few pages, then felt that they shouldn't leave a review because they didn't read the whole thing.
You can reduce purple prose at least a bit by replacing similes with metaphors or related literary devices. As an example:
"Grace,“ Tedd whispered, fear striking into in his heart like a cold needle.
would become
"Grace,“ Tedd whispered, icy fear stabbing his heart.
Not only does this reduce wordiness, but it uses more evocative language. Remember: Less is More!
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Re: [FANFIC] Frost (completed 2008/06/29)

Postby Ineluki on Fri Aug 22, 2008 7:33 am

Well, thank you, Proginoskes. That's a lot of insight that I can use very well :)
Half of those minor errors are actually typos that neither the spell checker could find, nor a friend reading it first, nor I when I checked through it for the fourth time just yesterday. (the pdf has been merged and updated yesterday, the plain text not, the single chapters will be taken down soon)
But some things were really foreign to me or lost in translation it seems... (I use dict.leo.org to translate back and forth between english and german since that helps greatly to avoid word repetitions, but there's a little downside it seems ^^;)
So, thanks!

As for the "purple prose", that's actually pretty funny now that I realize it... because only write that way in english fiction, when I try to build ambience, and I don't really know why!
Maybe because it seems easier to not mess sth. up when I'm not sure if "icy fear" would be as clear to a reader as it would be to me... eh, a bad habit picked up in intensive course english in school, I fear ^^;
But well, now that I know it, I'll try to avoid it. It wasn't really trying to increase text size, hell no, I can't even help but trying to keep it short... but as I said: it's more a learned bad habit :-/
As for enticing to write more... well, now that I have some possible points for improvement, that changes a lot! Nearly everything in fact, except my limited time ... it may take some time to adjust my english writing patterns, but since I *like* writing english, that shouldn't be the problem... we'll see.
Thanks again for your time, it's invaluable insight.
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Re: [FANFIC] Frost (completed 2008/06/29)

Postby Proginoskes on Tue Sep 23, 2008 8:18 pm

Glad to be of service.
I was just going over my "View your posts" list, and I'm glad I came across this thread: I just realised that after I gave my feedback two pages in, I went "Eh, I'll finish it later." and proceeded to forget about it entirely. Happily, I never deleted the PDF, and I have a good memory for stories, so I can easily pick up where I left off. (Fun linguistic fact: in Shakespearean English, "happy" was a synonym for "lucky"; this usage persists in the adverbial form,which can be used in a manner similar to "luckily" or "thankfully" in addition to a manner appropriate to the adjective's modern meaning.)
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