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Something about Dragons

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Something about Dragons

Tips: 0.00 INK Postby shinigami_002 on Wed Jun 14, 2006 3:56 pm

Alright this started out as an english short story about three years ago and it caught my attention everynow and again and is still yet to be complete. so heres teh first instalment of it. 'Something About Dragons"


Something About Dragons

By Shinigami_002

The day is dark and gloomy in the city of Rankul. There are the usual thieves coming and going, the wizards are at their magic again, you can tell because of the odd coloured smoke rising from the Hall of Magic. The city watch is pacing up and down the streets doing nothing about the thefts of items from the carts and so forth, in the markets; you can hear the cart owners shouting, “Hey, put that back!”


Enter Jerald Oslar, tall, dark, and handsome, carrying a beautifully hand-crafted sword. Walking beside him is his friend and partner Karen Rifkin; she is relatively tall and extremely beautiful for her line of work. As they walk by Losers Bar they see someone fly through a window and hit the ground running. They look at each other, shrug, and enter. As soon as Karen stepped through the door a bottle flew past her head, but before the bottle hit the ground she kneed the offending thrower in the gut and then neatly hit him over the head with an elbow.

Karen looked at the would-be attacker and saw that it was the bartender and owner Mikal MacLine, and said “Sorry Mikal, I thought it was a bar fight and …”

Mikal groaned and said, “No it was just a bum who wouldn’t pay for a few drinks. And anyway that doesn’t give you the reason to hit an old man, now does it?”

“Take it easy on her Mikal,” said a low, yet firm, voice by the doorway. Jerald stood at leaning on the door with his arms crossed, “It’s been slow, there haven’t been any wars for years and nothing big has happened. So even though we can find work doing nothing and get paid, its boring,” he said. Pointing to the back of the bar questionably, Mikal, still on the floor, gave him a nod and Jerald helped himself to a drink.

“Well that’s your job isn’t it? To find jobs and get them done?” said Mikal

“And besides,” Jerald continued not taking notice of the question, “I remember when you could block both of those blows. You’re getting slow.”

In an instant there was a short scrambling noise behind Jerald, it was Mikal, suddenly, knife in hand. “You want fast, eh,” he yelled as he lunged at Jared, “Well, have at this.” Three things happened in a flash, two men acting like children fighting, second, during this, a move from Mikal where the knife went for Jared’s gut, and finally, stillness.

Time slipped slowly back into this frozen scene Jared moved his hand down to his where he thought there would be a knife protruding… and found none. Both men straitened, Jared had a confused look on his face as he saw the knife that was supposed to be in his gut was still in Mikal’s gnarled hand. “It’s rubber, see,” Mikal said as he bent the blade.

“Oh,” Jared said comprehensively, “I see.”

“I was gunna put it on the market in a week, but seeing how it so easily fooled you, I might have to put it on earlier.”

Suddenly Mikal, with the grace of an old warrior, hit Jared square in the jaw. “So who’s slow now,” he said with a grin.

“You should be careful that in this town the person you’re selling it to don’t get himself killed,” Karen intervened with a word of caution.

“If their stupid enough to get stabbed then they shouldn’t buy it in the first place or at least that how the watch will see it when I explain,” Mikal said as he chimed a retort.

There was a rushing behind the door of the bar and the sound of screaming. Mikal waved one of the customers to take a look. The customer got up and went to the door, opened it and stuck his head out.

“Uh… I think it’s for you two,” he said calmly, pointing to Jared and Karen. They looked at each other and shrugged, got up and went to the door. Jared stuck his head out cautiously and saw nothing, he looked side to side then down, because in the city of Rankul there might just be a dwarf or two there.

He turned around and yelled, “There’s no one there you idiot,” looking at the customer angrily.

The customer pointed his finger upwards calmly, and every one went silent.

Jared stuck his head out the door slowly and whispered, “Are you sure?”

“Quite,” said the customer.
There was a roar. Jared looked out quickly and saw a huge dragon, and waved for Karen to follow as he ran towards the weapon store.
The customer shrugged, “That’s not something you see every day, a great bloody winged dragon.” There was a mummer of agreement and everyone went back to what they were doing.

When Jerald and Karen got to the weapons store, there was a nice selection of crossbows, a few bolts and three good horses left. They bought a large siege bow and a horse and rode towards the closest screaming mob. It was unfortunate that the closest mob was two religious groups out on the same day for two different religious holidays, seeing that it was a bad idea to do that they decided to go to the nearest treasury.


Why, might you ask, were they riding for a treasury and not straight for the dragon? Because every hero knows that dragons like to have a snack, then look for some soft gold somewhere to take a little snooze.


When they arrived, they found that the dragon was just flying over the city, doing nothing but flying. There was an ominous feeling about the dragon, it was just gliding, like it was more than just looking for food or gold, it was like it was enjoying the view from up there. And everyone knew dragons don’t enjoy views, they just kill and sleep, and that was all that was to it really. But this dragon was just gliding.

“Does that dragon look weird to you?” Jared said without taking his eyes of the animal.

“Nope, looks like a regular dragon to me.”

“No, not the way it looks, I mean the way it acts.”

There was a silence and she replied, “No.”

“Usually, they are killing and burning, and looking for gold, ya know,” he said confusedly.

“Well it probably can’t find a snack. Everyone’s gone in or something. That means it’ll be coming our way soon.”

“Yeah, you’re probably right,” Jared trailed off, still not convinced.


From way up here he could see everything. The wizard thought, ‘Hey, there’s the bakery I went too yesterday and oh, that’s the Hall of Magic, and wait, that guy owes me money’. ‘Hey this being a dragon thing isn’t half as bad as it seems’, he thought as he landed and changed back into the, tall and gangly, second class wizard that he was.

There are ten classes of wizardry (one is the lowest and ten is the highest level), and he was just a beginner and was pretty good, but not great. He always had a knack for really complex spells and incantations. “I hope no one saw that,” he said as he ducked into the Hall of Magic.


Jared and Karen were on the hill that was part of the treasury. They saw the dragon land and sped off to find it. At the same time not being stupid enough to leave all that valuable equipment lying around where just anyone could snatch it, they took it with them and sold it back to the weapons shop for annoyingly less than they had bought it for and went on their way.


There was a big commotion in the Hall of Magic. The Head Wizard was furious and she had no idea that any one could actually change themselves into a dragon. It was amazing. It was crazy. It wasn’t taught in any wizarding school that she knew of. ‘I mean of course, students have been known to make up spells and stuff, but this is nuts’ she thought. ‘It was extremely dangerous to just turn into a dog or a cat, but it would be considered suicide to even think of turning into a DRAGON! The mental exertion alone would probably be so intense that your head would explode.’

She sat quietly till the only sound was the sound of breathing. Then she stood up and said, “There has been a breaking of the rules. As you know, the rule prohibiting dragons within the vicinity of Rankul has been at this school since the Dragon Act of 0124 A.C.,” (the hall had been there since 39 After Creation, it was currently the 1363 A.C., yet one of their years equals three of our years so it was considerably old by now), “And there has been someone who has decided there needs to be a change and has done something in order to bring here the dragon you might have seen a few hours ago…”As the speech continued, the students listened but with half an ear.


At this time Jared and Karen were standing outside talking to a few of the people who lived nearby. They were saying that the dragon had landed and just disappeared. Karen, who was doing the most talking, looked back at Jared to find him stooped over an extremely large footprint, and a lot of little ones, leading to the Hall of Magic. There eyes met and they nodded to each other, Jared stood up and walked up to the door of the Hall of Magic and opened it.

‘There she is,’ he thought, as he looked into the grand hall, ‘she’s gunna kill me.’ They were almost done as a matter of fact, but too late, she had noticed him, and abruptly ended the school-wide meeting. He was in for it.

After the meeting Jared waved for her attention, this was going to get weird. Jared and the Master Wizard had a long history together. The fact that they were mother and son was just a coincidence. “Hi Mom,” he said, trying not to be too nervous.

“Hello Jared, why are you here?” she said trying not to lose her temper.

“Ya know, I was just about to ask that same question.”

At this moment Karen walked in, saw the odd look on her partners face and then saw Jared’s mother, Janet Oslar. “Good afternoon Mrs. Oslar. How are you doing today?” she said as polite as she could and still look her in the face.

“How is it a good afternoon? And I’m not doing so well at the moment. I’ve found that one of my students has either figured how to summon a dragon or have figured how to transfigure into a dragon. And you showing up here with that confused look on your face led me to believe that it’s probably that than any other explanation my board of trustees could think of.”

“Well, the weird thing is that we found some footprints outside the Hall that went from the dragon prints to the hall itself,” Jared whispered as not to arouse the suspicions of the students.

“Yes, I told you that I thought it was one of my students,” said Mrs. Oslar, “but please, follow me.” They followed.

The room was huge. It, from what Jared remembered from a shattered child-hood, had an actual module of the city, even down to the ghostly pale rats and people (and carts and horses etc, etc…) that moved around the module. “This room, or at least what it does, has not been seen by many people, even in the magic world.”

“What does it do?” Karen asked.

“It shows and records everything that happens in the city, right?” Jared said quickly, looking to his mother.

“Correct Jared, for someone who gave up on magic at the first few bumps, I’m surprised that you remember, but you forgot that it only records about an hours worth of time at a time. So if you want to take a look at somthing in the past you need to get here quickly. Now I’m going to go back to when you said the dragon landed.”

There was a blur in the module city, or to be more accurate many blurs of people walking backwards, then a lack of all that motion. The picture before them was of a dragon on the ground. “See and if we can go a bit further,” Mrs Oslar said and there was another blur, “and… there. Now we can take a closer look at our expulsion.” The picture zoomed in on his face. “Ah, I see. Mr. Lucas Flook,” she said, “a good student, and some major potential, shame to have to kill him.”

“Is that all that you’ll do to him?” Karen asked.

“Yes that’s about it really,” Mrs. Oslar said.

“But that’s stupid won’t you want to ask him how he did it or something,” Karen said, a bit annoyed.

“My dear, that would be a powerful thing indeed, but what if an offending country got hold of it without our knowing?” Mrs. Oslar said, knowing that Karen had made a very good point, but refused to admit it.

“Okay, so… I think we’ll be leaving then right,” Karen said nudging Jared, who was starring into space. “Uh… What? Oh… oh yeah, OK,leaving then.” They turned to leave.

“But I just had a thought,” Janet said, slipping out of Master-Wizard-mode, “I was thinking since Lucas really does have a lot of potential, would you two mind looking after him? It’d be better for all of us. I wouldn’t have to kill him, and he could still come to school, under your watchful eyes. And besides if word gets out that there is someone who could transfigure into a dragon there might be a... need for awkward disappearances, if you catch my meaning.”

Jared froze in his tracks. ‘This can’t be happening’ he thought, ‘just not happening’. “OK mother, what’s the catch. Will we be cursed or something if we don’t?”

“Oh. Why darling, nothing that serious. Just have to put him up in your place and maybe a trip to the hospital, that’s all,” she said smiling to herself.

“Ok, we’ll do it, but you’ll have to pay us,” said Karen butting in. She could see where this was going.

“Fine,” Mrs Oslar said, switching back into Master-mode, “One hundred fifty dollars a month. Is that fair? Wait at the back. Jared you know where. Oh, and Karen, I’d like to talk to you.” Karen stayed, Jared would have too but he caught the look that his mother was giving him and left in a hurry. Mrs Oslar opened a trunk and pulled something out of it, “This was my fathers and he said to give it to someone who could make better use of it.” It was a sword in a plain leather sheath. “It’ll come in handy if you get in a mess. And by the way I’d like it if you’d bring Jared by every once in a while”

“Riiiiight,” said Karen with a wow-this-is-an-odd-thing-to-give-me-and-an-even-odder-topic-to-be-talking-about-at-a-time-like-this look on her face, and turned to leave the way Jared just left.

‘Ya know,’ Mrs Oslar thought to herself, ‘I sometimes wonder about those two’.




Okay read and reveiw people! I'll have some of the rest later when i finish it.

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shinigami_002
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Tips: 0.00 INK Postby MeiaGisborn on Tue Aug 15, 2006 8:07 pm

Jerald stood at leaning on the door with his arms crossed, “It’s been slow, there haven’t been any wars for years and nothing big has happened.


That sentence needs a bit of rewording, with dialogue too. Not sure how you want to say it, so I’ll leave that up to you. The part where you say “stood at leaning” is kind of funkeh for the most part. Don’t know what you mean by that.

In an instant there was a short scrambling noise behind Jerald, it was Mikal, suddenly, knife in hand. “You want fast, eh,” he yelled as he lunged at Jared, “Well, have at this.” Three things happened in a flash, two men acting like children fighting, second, during this, a move from Mikal where the knife went for Jared’s gut, and finally, stillness.


Another wording problem. You gotta be careful when you are describing things. You can’t let one thing, ramble into another. Especially in a fight scene, its kind of confusing and the reader can’t picture much in their mind.

“If their stupid enough to get stabbed then they shouldn’t buy it in the first place or at least that how the watch will see it when I explain,” Mikal said as he chimed a retort.


“If they’re stupid enough….” Also, “that’s how the watch…”

Jared stuck his head out cautiously and saw nothing, he looked side to side then down, because in the city of Rankul there might just be a dwarf or two there.


After “nothing” a period. Also “and then down.” Also just rewording the part about the city of Rankul having a few dwarfs.

A thing you do a lot is this:

customer shrugged, “That’s not something you see every day, a great bloody winged dragon.”


If its not a new sentence, you don’t capitalize that, “that’s.” If you actually separated the dialogue from the rest of the descriptions, then yes, you must capitalize but not when it’s like that. You do it for almost all of this part of the story.

There was a mummer of agreement and everyone went back to what they were doing.

Its “murmur.”

When Jerald and Karen got to the weapons store, there was a nice selection of crossbows, a few bolts and three good horses left.


A horse at a weapon store? Hmm…just seems strange to me. It could be that they already run around with horses, so no need to get a horse at a weapon store, which I find strange, no matter the time of the story.

Wow, this story moves along too fast. The reader does not get much of a pause. Everything is too fast-paced. You don’t quite describe enough and let the readers get settle in the time zone, the age, into the characters, or anything like that. Its good to have action, but this is not even action. It’s just moving too fast and the story is told in a way that kind of assumes that the readers know what the narrators are talking about. Also there are no distinct switches of POV’s that we get confused when another character starts narrating. This is the major thing about the story. The grammar is not so bad, the spelling mistakes either, but just how the story moves and is told.

“Fine,” Mrs Oslar said, switching back into Master-mode, “One hundred fifty dollars a month.


Hmm…”dollars?” I don’t know, there is a few mis-match, in terms of what I envision this place is like and in what time zone it is. This confusion might also be because you don’t really put us in place very much. I don’t know if that kind of currency, really matches the setting. You might want to think about consistency in terms of plot.

Anyway, that’s it really. Hope you understand where I’m coming from and if you have any further questions…ask. ^_^

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Tips: 0.00 INK Postby miyumi on Wed Aug 16, 2006 11:37 am

Shinigami, I knew I'd seen this before!

Meia, in the high school we went to, we were taught that we always capitalize the first words in quotes, unless it's a character continuing a sentance which that character had started earlier.

So:

Nichole said, "That dress, it's so hot!"


and

"That dress," Nichole said, "it's so hot!"


and

"That dress, it's so hot!" Nichole said.


is what Shinigami and I were taught to do. That's why you see it so often. And frankly, that's what I see the published authors doing as well.

(yes, Shinigami, I also use the same nick for both the forums, so I am who you think I am)

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Tips: 0.00 INK Postby MeiaGisborn on Thu Aug 17, 2006 1:43 am

Not gonna say you were taught wrong, but in fictional works, its not done like that. As far as I've seen. I've taken a few creative writing courses in college and thats how we were taught. I understand what you guys have been taught, which is a different case. If you are quoting/citing something from another work that starts with a capital, you have to be consistent and make sure that it is capitalized in the quotes. Or if of course, its a name of a person, or some company, etc. I guess I should have made it clear. Or maybe thats how guys were taught, even writing creatively, but even in H.S. and lower, I was never taught to do that to dialogue. o.o;

But who knows, maybe later on in my life, i'll be taught different. Thats as far as I know right now and its not correct to do it that way. Plus it doesn't quite look right to me. XD

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Tips: 0.00 INK Postby shinigami_002 on Sun Aug 20, 2006 6:11 pm

Well damn, if i wanted that then i could have taken it to my MFing teacher when this thing was due about 4 years ago now.

While i apreciate you pointing these things grammer and spelling problems out to me, its just little things. As i said before i've just kinda been taking a look at it ever so often. Also, in leu of this, i have only read through this a total of 4 times.

As for not being detailed enough, yeah i can see where your coming from.

FYI: the "weapons shop" would have been more like a convienence kinda thing, in those time weapon makers and sales people would have kept horses around for the type of customer who would just be in a hurry.

and if your going to be tecnical about the money, this was a short notice thing and it was convienent to be able to just throw a curency in without having to take the tima and make one up. Lazy i know, but what can ya do.

And finaly;

[quote\]Quote:
customer shrugged, “That’s not something you see every day, a great bloody winged dragon.”


If its not a new sentence, you don’t capitalize that, “that’s.” If you actually separated the dialogue from the rest of the descriptions, then yes, you must capitalize but not when it’s like that. You do it for almost all of this part of the story. [\quote]

The HELL you don't, i just have one question. What the hell was your college profesor smoking when he/she told you not to. Thats one of the basics in writing, if its the begining of a SPOKEN sentence then you do CAPOTALIZE it.

I learned how to write in ENGLAND which means that I was taught how to write EVERYTHING properly, because they did create the damn language and way of writing it. And if any bloody american prat says otherwise then thay can shove it somewhere they dont want it.

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Tips: 0.00 INK Postby miyumi on Sun Aug 20, 2006 8:05 pm

when did you go to England?

FWI, it's Capitalize.

I stand by my comments that I made on Fletcher: it's extremely predictable.

Suggestion for the currency to not seem out of place: use D&D currency. If you don't know what something is supposed to be, just ask Eric, I'm sure he still has his books handy.

And, Meia, as far as I can tell, the only pov switch is to the magician who turned into a dragon in the first place and then back, which to me was straight-forward enough. The master of the school is the character's mother, so the character has definitely seen the switch between mother and master modes very often in the past, and can tell it easily.

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Tips: 0.00 INK Postby MeiaGisborn on Sun Aug 20, 2006 10:47 pm

Woah there Shinigami, I don't critique here because I wan't to pick up on every single detail and whatever else. I do it because...well I signed up volantarily to do this. If you didn't want me to be honest, then you could have asked for no comments in such a way. I've only said what I've learnt and I know. Nothing here has to take blood from you. Also, none of these circumstances that you are mentioning now, were made into a note earlier so I wouldn't know about them, so please don't bite my head off.

You stick by the "English" way and I'll stick to what I've learnt. Like I said, I've yet to be taught this way. Until then, lets stick to our guns. Nothing I say is written in stone. So please, if this is the attitude I get when I'm just giving you my honest OPINION then you can tell me next time not to comment. No need to shout and all that.

Truly not needed.

Thank you.

P.S. I just pointed out the grammar stuff because I thought you would like to know, not because I'm perfect at it myself. o_o; Thanks Miyu but its not a thing about being so technical and everything else. I try to use spell check and reread things but I also make mistakes and other typos. Jeebus. Truly not the attitude thats needed. If you want to disagree with me, thats fine but you can do it in a more civil way.

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Tips: 0.00 INK Postby shinigami_002 on Tue Feb 13, 2007 4:03 am

after reading what I wrote I applologize for my abruptness, I must have been in abad mood that day.

I now thank you for the imput and hope that you will continue when I write more.

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Tips: 0.00 INK Postby Circ on Wed Feb 14, 2007 12:10 pm

Thank you for your apology, Shinigam. It is refreshing when someone is able to admit their behavior is not altogether savory.

Right now, the purpose of the "Growth" forum is a bit obscure. To clarify, it is designed to help people grow as writers through the process of them posting their works and receiving feedback on how they can improve it. If you don't want feedback, just say so; if you want a particular kind of feedback, please mention that as well so the Mercenary Spectators can be of more effective.

Now, the matter of quotations. When a character speaks, they are actually beginning a new, independent sentence from the one their speech is nested in. Like all sentences, it is capitalized. I repeat, they are two, distinct sentences, and deserve to be treated as such. Miyumi's example on how this works is excellent.

As far as commentary on the story goes--yes, there are spelling and grammar errors, and to a certain extent they take away from the writing, but I believe the author is aware of them. My main issue is the character interaction. It seems so fake, to be blunt about it; like they're all too high to care, that everything happening around them is routine and boring, and like they're in some constant malaise. I think a good way to put it would be to say all the characters act very casual; furthermore, there is no change of mood.

My two cents.

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