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Saffire Persian
27th October 2005, 10:30 PM
All reviews, comments, and criticisms are greatly appreciated. The story in itself will be rated PG-13, although not all chapters will warrant that rating. And note, this Prologue is longer then what standard prologues are, but there is a reason. Hopefully all those who read will enjoy this tale centered around the Disaster Pokemon: Absol.

+Chapter Index+

Prelude
Overture (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=2477902&postcount=31)
Etude (http://www.serebiiforums.com/showpost.php?p=2737946&postcount=67)

Negrek: I can't thank you enough for your review on FF.net. I posted it on the site before, in a rougher form, so I could get opinions while I waited to post the real Serebii version, so I could correct all of the errors that might have been hit upon before debuting it here. Your review helped a lot. I can't tell you how much. If you do happen to read this revised version, I hope you will find it improved. And yes, all the chapter names will be on music terms.



Requiem of a Dream

By: Saffire Persian


Prelude

A piece or movement that serves as an introduction to another section or composition and establishes the key.


Thunder rumbled ominously across the midnight sky, while chilling rain pelted the earth below, mixing with the soggy dirt and grass. The wind was a violent maelstrom of activity, swirling and buffeting all the unfortunates that had chosen to weather out the storm, outside and unprotected. The sky above was clouded, darkened with a thousand shades of black. The stars and moon were all but gone, swallowed entirely by the dark, malicious clouds that now blanketed the sky above the city. They were greedy, swallowing everything that came into their path, blanketing the world below in darkness.

Lightning raced across the sky, illuminating the ground below for a few brief moments, before whisking away back up into the clouds that sent them, only to dart down to tease the ground again. The pattern continued as if in some malicious jest upon the inhabitants helpless inhabitants, trapped in their pitiful dwellings. The thunder’s voice seemed to echo that statement, voice laced with unprecedented malice. It was mocking them, especially mocking him.

Castor was alone, perched atop a flat roofed building, ruby eyes gazing upon the desolate city. The wind buffeted his thick, silky fur, while the rain soaked his already bedraggled body to the core. He was cold, but found he did not care. The Absol’s gaze was fierce and watchful, but obviously distressed. Castor’s emotions and thoughts were as tumultuous as the storm that now assaulted the island city of Sootopolis. Confused and for once at a loss of what to do, he sat there, watching, waiting . . .

For what?

A friend. A light in the darkness.

Why?

To prove everything wrong. To prove himself wrong.

But was he wrong? Was he some how at fault?

Castor did not know. He could only hope.

He felt powerless, like a blind newborn that relied upon its mother for constant care and vigilance. A newborn could do nothing. Nothing. His efforts sitting, ever watchful, had yielded nothing. For three hours he had sat, an immovable sentinel upon the rain soaked roof, scouring the ground below with desperate eyes, wishing to catch a glimpse of a certain Pokemon. He had braved the torrential winds and rain, ignoring all physical and mental discomforts in hope of waylaying his friend, and reviving the wings of hope that had died in him some time ago. If he could at least save one life – one life that actually meant something to him – he would be satisfied.

But Castor had not seen her. He knew she must have already crossed the paved walkways in the darkness, determined to pursue her ultimate fate. How he had missed her, he did not know. All of his attention had been devoted to that one task: finding her. It was a simple task that anyone should have been able to do. But he had failed . . . again.

Crrracck!

Lightning flashed again, followed by an ominous roar. Castor braced himself against the buffeting wind as it slammed into his body with all the might of a deadly tidal wave. Thrown back a few paces, Castor closed his eyes, claws digging into the cement surface, trying to find purchase as best he could.

A vision assaulted him then, far more powerful than whatever disaster could beset him. The vision came upon him so fierce and sudden, he cried out, terrified.

To think the things that occurred in the realm of imaginary could be so much more terrible than the things that existed realm of reality. He knew what the vision was about before it had the chance to fully make itself known, but that did not stop it from coming. The world around him faded. The screaming of the wind lessened, and the chilling drops of water evaporated, until all that was left to his perception was that of what the vision willed.

He was in almost completely enveloped in darkness, the ancient smell of wet and stale air assaulting his sense of smell; but even more overwhelming was the smell of death; the smell of rot and blood. His vision began to come into focus, pupils dilating to take in all of the available light.

Even the dark could not protect him from the scene before him. Castor saw the blood, the twisted bodies, and most of all, the shadowed faces in all their hellish glory. He had seen this all before, but that did not take away the sting – the sting the pain, fear, and revulsion that he had been left to deal with from the first encounter. Dizzy and nauseous, Castor noticed the million shards of rock littering the ground around him, points as sharp as a Scyther’s blades, stained with the blood and flesh of those who had met their unfortunate demise. The bodies were broken and cut, twisted at every hideous and unimaginable angle, and the blood that mingled with the rocky earth had almost a life of its own.

Castor found his eyes unwillingly lingering on the faces of the dead. Their smiles were haunting, deepening the dark ambience that permeated the cave. Castor wanted to close his eyes, reluctant to look upon the faces of the dead, but they would not let him go. Their eyes were staring at him, beckoning him with their magnetic gazes. Join us! they seemed to say. Join us in this dance of death, and find out where you truly belong.

Castor flinched, trying to tear his spirit-self away from the scene that had long haunted his deepest nightmares and hunted him in his most pleasant of dreams. It was a plague, a never-ending curse. He hated it. He hated these visions with every fiber of his being. Nothing could ever change that.

Castor’s vision lurched, and was magnified a hundredfold. His vision panned around the scene of destruction, focusing and unfocusing until he found his gaze fixated on a familiar face dashed with cuts, her eyes crying tears of red. Castor’s throat constricted. Bile rose in his throat.

“No!”

He threw his spirit body aside, tearing himself away from the fibers that bound him to this alternate reality.

He landed hard on his shoulder. He was back on the cement roof, gasping for air. The rain felt welcoming, and the thunder was a glorious herald back to the kingdom of reality. The elated feelings were quickly siphoned away, replaced with the feeling of dread. Castor arose, ignoring the pain that shot through his right shoulder.

“I won’t let it!” he hissed. “I won’t let it!”

He bounded off the building, landing in a swirling mixture of grass and mud. Without a moment’s hesitation, he darted down the deserted streets, paw-falls echoing eerily through the deserted alleyways. Castor ignored the rain, he ignored the thunder, he ignored everything but the place of destination:

The Cave of Origin.

It was a place of beginnings where everything was rumored to have begun.

But was it really? Or was it merely disguised to take on a more fortunate light?

To him, it felt like the beginning of the end.


&&&

Entering the Cave of Origin was like breaking into an alternate world that was beyond reality's jurisdiction. Time itself seemed to freeze as the momentum of Castor’s bound carried him into the cave that had appeared often in his visions. The darkness that pervaded the cave was like a voluminous ebony cloak, chasing away any light that dared to try to shine through.

Nocturnal though he was, Castor’s eyes still had trouble adjusting to the sudden lack of light; and the atmosphere only continued to darken, taking on a more sinister shade with every step. A deep sense of reluctance flooded his body and he found himself gazing back to the entrance of the cave, looking longingly out into the storm. Castor’s pace slackened as he forced himself to continue on, repeating an Absol rhyme in his head. He loathed the things it spoke of in regards to he and the rest of his kind, but it still brought him a small sense of peace in the growing darkness.


‘I am a walking beast of chaos, disaster follows me in my stride,
Heed me, reject me, but do not ignore me,
For not only am I the warrior of Life that holds Salvation’s key,
But also the unwilling herald of Death to you who keep your foolish pride.’

The pathway was beginning to spiral downwards, a chill wind blowing from some unseen crack in the cavern’s walls. The Absol continued his descent into the very heart of Origin, a colony of Zubat the only ones to mark his silent passage. Faintly, he could smell human here, as well as a mixture of other scents both new and old, including one of which he never which he never expected. Eyes narrowing, Castor raised his head, pondering the new development.

“What could he . . .”

So absorbed in his recent thought, Castor didn’t notice the approaching body, until it was almost upon him. Forced to think upon his feet, Castor turned abruptly, legs splaying in hopes to regain balance as his paws scrapped across the rough floor. His foe was relentless, already coming after him in a headlong charge. Speeding up, Castor leaped over the humanoid figure, landing hard on the rocky terrain, using his right forepaw to pivot him to the side.

The sudden twisting movement on his right leg had had proved too fast, too harsh, for his previously injured leg, and within the first sharp wrenching movement, it did what Castor had always feared it would do: give out.

His stability and sense of balance broken, Castor was only quick enough to avoid a lethal blow to the neck, the vice-like jaws instead snapping over his right forepaw with a hard, sickening crunch.

Castor cried out in pain, struggling instinctively to pull free his broken paw. But the jaws refused to release it, clamping down harder with every pull. Grimacing at the thought, but seeing no alternative, he went into a Swords Dance. The newly created adrenaline coursed through his veins like fire through ice. The pain in his limb began to fade away into a dull ache as the Swords Dance reached its peak. His body twisted and writhed with the newfound rhythm that pulsated through his body, and with a last hard twist, he tore his foreleg free. Not even the Swords Dance could block the sudden, acute onset of pain that radiated from his leg as skin and fur were ripped from it, leaving him a bloody, though luckily intact, limb. The pain, however, was quickly receding.

Castor limped closer to the other wall, tucking the bloody paw close to his body, not daring to put any weight on it. It was fractured, there was no question about it. Running away was definitely out of the question, so he assumed a defensive stance as best he could. His attacker hadn’t moved from its spot, instead, turning towards him. The great brown jaws spat out a great clump of white fur as shimmering red eyes materialized out of the gloom, doe-eyed and vulnerable. The creature’s face quickly followed, radiating pure, untainted innocence as it looked at him just like as a cold, starving child would. Had it not bitten him, Castor might have been moved to sympathy.

Castor growled. It was a Mawile.

Absol and Mawile made eye contact. The Mawile’s ruby eyes brightened up considerably at the connection, its dainty mouth curling up into a fanged smile.

“Kitty, kitty, are you lost, little kitty?” It was a feminine voice, as sweet and pure as honey. A sweet fragrance reminiscent of wildflowers seemed to fill the air at the Mawile’s words as she twirled around, her second jaw making a clip clip noise. He shook his head, trying to ward off the feelings of unwariness and relaxation that were suddenly coming upon him.

“It’s none of your concern,” he finally said, sounding braver than he actually felt. “Get out of my way. Now.”

“Lost kitty must learn to be patient, yes?” She laughed, her body quaking with unsuppressed mirth. She took a step forwards, hands clasped behind her back. “Poor kitty, all lost and all alone. Just like the other kitty, but not for lllooonnngg.”

“What other ‘little kitty’?” Castor said sharply. “Where?” Castor’s attention was roused, and despite the newfound feelings of security, Castor remained defensive. Carefully, he slowly began backing up, hobbling towards the other end of the cave. She mimicked his moments, taking one leisurely step at a time. Her gaze was sympathetic, accepting.

Like an angel, Castor’s mind began to say, the flowery scent filling his mouth and nostrils. His muscles were fast becoming liquid; his mind relaxed; and his fears and worries were gushing out from his body in great waves. He stumbled in his backwards progress, his white body swaying as he leaned against a cave wall for support.

The Mawile made a swirling motion with her tiny finger. “Down, down, down. All-l-l-l the way down. Deep down in Origin’s belly, all alone. Back to the beginning kitty went, yes.” The Mawile noticed the Absol’s perplexed expression. Her grin became wider. Her angelic appearance was beginning to look far more sinister. “Dead.”

Castor’s posture became rigid, jolting him out of his growing reverie. Castor’s red eyes shown with a sudden understanding. Rage filled him, one single thought overpowering all: she had to be wrong. “You lie!”

The Mawile giggled, shaking her head. “Poor kitty.” Her glance became thoughtful, as if recalling some fond memory. She began skipping toward him, her beautiful singing voice resounding off the cave’s walls, each word accented by a skip.

“Bound, Broken, Searching, Fighting . . .”

At the Mawile’s words, images of the broken bodies from the previous vision began to surface once more, but none of them occupied his mind as much as hers did. Her eyes were still crying, red rivulets coursing down her face. She was crying because he had failed. He had failed her. Yet another name was added to Castor's book of the dead.

Castor’s muzzle curled into a fierce snarl, the relaxed emotions quickly turning into feelings of anger. And even though the flowery aroma was making his head spin, making it increasingly harder to concentrate, Castor could see now what this thing was. She was no angel of mercy, but a fallen one: thrust out and dammed from whatever heaven that existed upon the earth.

“Ripped, Twisted, Fading, Crying . . .”

Castor had heard enough. He began to hobble along the downward slope. He knew he had to get out – clear his head of all the horrific images that were now flashing spontaneously in his mind’s eye with each new syllable.

“Lost, Alone, Bloody, Dying . . .”

The song was becoming louder and more rhythmic, but Castor ignored it. Instead, he made himself focus on the thick tendrils of smoke curling around him, enveloping his body in their gentle grasp.

“Writhing, Reaching, Passing, Sighing . . .”

He was phasing out, beginning to disappear in the ebon haze that now surrounded him. The scenery wavered, fading into nothing as he pictured the destination in his mind in all its horrid glory. He had never been there before, but he could see every detail clearly in his mind. He hoped that alone would be enough.

The Faint Attack complete, the atmosphere gave one more sudden jerk before Castor vanished entirely. Castor pushed his physical body through what seemed to him to be the very fabric that made up the earth, and appearing in a sort of limbo – a pathway between the previous location and the next – that was real, but not quite real.

But he couldn’t pay attention to that. Full and complete concentration was a must; he knew that a loss of focus could easily spell disaster. A body, wrapped in the same Dark-type energy as he, suddenly slammed into his ribs. The exultant face of the Mawile filled his vision, one of her tiny fingers wagging back and forth. Concentration disrupted, both Castor and the Mawile were flung out of the pseudo-dimension, phasing back into existence with a loud, echoing crack. Now, they were both falling deep into an abyss neither beginning nor ending in sight, entrapped between two thick walls of stone.

At least, Castor thought, grimly evaluating the area my head is clearing. But his eyes soon narrowed in confusion and anger as he took into account the other body that was falling with him.

She was laughing. The Mawile was laughing.

Growling, Castor twisted around as he fell, scratching and biting the steel skin of the Mawile to his best ability, in attempts to ward off Mawile’s persistent advances, as well as to quiet her horrendous, mocking laughter.

In an act to further distance himself from the Steel-type, he waited until he was on top of the spiraling mass, before surging forward into the Mawile’s body with a Quick Attack, using her as a push off to further distance himself from her, and he succeeded. Now, he was falling faster and deeper into the expanding crevasse.

There was no sign of pursuit on the Mawile's part, her ruby eyes shifting down in what either could be curiosity or amusement. However, Castor knew it was only a matter of time before the Mawile got frustrated and attempted to catch up with him.

Castor then forced himself upright, a growl rising in his throat as the faint silvery glow of Iron Defense covered the Mawile’s body, adding not only to her defense, but to her weight. No doubt she was trying to catch up with him, and she wanted to do it slowly -- to make him suffer. Castor snorted at the idea. He would turn this situation into his advantage and her downfall; he would make certain of it.

He bared his fangs, chancing a glance down at his oozing leg. The sharp pain beginning to surface as the Swords Dance’s effects began to decline. He would have to work quickly.

Focusing on the task at hand, Castor’s eyes glowed a pure white as he focused on calling an otherworldly force that had been in his family's line for centuries. At his call, the very atmosphere shivered, and vague images of what was to come flashed rapidly through his brain, though nothing was detailed and definite enough for Castor to make out clearly. The glow in his eyes gradually faded and his vision cleared. Outwardly, nothing appeared to have happened, but Castor knew better.

Now, all the Absol had to do was wait.

The Mawile was using Iron Defense again, her laughter bouncing off the abyss’s walls. Despite the added weight, she appeared to be no closer to Castor then what she had been before. The Mawile appeared to have noticed this, shouting angrily: “Dead, dead, dead!”

Castor didn’t answer the Mawile’s taunt, feeling the subtle changes in the cave’s atmosphere as it prepared to host the coming attack. Even now, Castor could see evidence of its approach. Small pinpricks were slowly beginning to eat their way through the darkness, gathering energy. The air was beginning to take on a staticy quality to it while the fur on the back of his neck was starting to rise. Castor himself, however, continued to fall.

A fierce gale tore through the abyss, but the Mawile showed no sign of comprehension of what was coming, insisting on repeating her angry taunt in rapid, quick-fire succession.

“Dead. Dead. Dead!”

The light had now formed into a perfectly symmetrical orb, surging upwards with a deadly intent, its energies swirling in a plethora of colors. It brushed past Castor with a silent, deadly efficiency, leaving a cold, dead chill like the breath from a tomb in its wake.

Mawile’s continuous jeers ended as abruptly as they had started as she finally beheld the coming attack; however, the Mawile made no move to evade the Psychic assault. She didn’t even cry out when the Future Sight fully enveloped her tiny body; instead, giggling like a happy child while the orb held her body aloft, as if to show her mercy.

But the orb held no mercy for the laughing Mawile within, just as there was no mercy in Castor’s glassy eyes, as he fell deeper into the abyss, himself becoming no more than a pinprick of white. The Mawile’s giggles quickly turned into high-pitched screams as the Future Sight finally took hold, its energy coursing around the Mawile like electricity. The Mawile’s body spasmed and jerked as the Future Sight shattered her steel defenses, and her pained cries fell on deaf ears.

Castor could only listen as the screams slowly faded away, until they finally stopped altogether just as the Future Sight began to wane, fading away like it had never been. She made no sound afterward, not even a whimper. Whether she was unconscious or dead, Castor did not particularly care. His objective had been accomplished, and now his mind was strangely blank. An odd numbness was coming over his body, and he suddenly felt cold. Terribly cold, but he could do nothing about it. He couldn’t even move, only think jumbled thoughts, until finally, he surrendered to the abyss, the Mawile’s chant echoing oddly in his head.

Bound

Broken

Searching
Fighting

Ripped

Twisted
Fading
Crying Lost


Alone
Bloody

Dying

Writhing Reaching


Passing
Sighing…



&&&
Falling… Falling… Falling…
&&&

Nirarekdan
28th October 2005, 3:50 AM
Okay, 10/10, right off. No spelling errors, grammar mistakes... Description was perfect! I could see everything in my head perfectly. There's an element of mystery, plus a cliffhanger-type ending (to me at least) which has gotten me hooked right away. Even though this was just a prelude, I can tell that this is going to be awesome.

xXSaberXx
28th October 2005, 4:40 AM
O_O

Just...


Wow.

The description was vivid and concise, the Cave of Origin Concept wonderful. The poor Mawile....poor thing. I loved her though. THe dancing, the taunting, THE VERBS AT THE END!


“Lost kitty must learn to be patient, yes?” She laughed, her body quaking with unsuppressed mirth. She took a step forwards, hands clasped behind her back. “Poor kitty, all lost and all alone. Just like the other kitty, but not for lllooonnngg.”

Very coy and violent, all in one. Made me go, WHOMG HAHA WAIT EWWW.

xP

Awesome, all in all.

Keep it up, and I will continue to read.

^^

Saber

Sike Saner
28th October 2005, 5:19 AM
Yes. Just...yes. Good 'n' creepy, just as I like it. I have to commend you for the description, as it was delicious. I already like Castor; I always enjoy a solid, significant Pokémon character. And the Mawile was just frickin' boss, instantly appreciated; not only because I have rarely seen that species used, but also because that was my very favorite kind of creepiness: The unwholesome mockery of innocence! ^_^ Fwee.

And BIG ol' kudos for the Mawile's rhyme. Yum. Reminds me of an Alice In Chains lyric ("Sinking, draining, drowning, bleeding, dead..."), and for that, I hug you. *hugs*

A very promising start. This is one to watch, right here.

Ash_Junior
28th October 2005, 2:05 PM
...

wow...

'course, I expected nothing less from you.

the Mawile's chanting kind of reminded me of the goblin songs from The Hobbit.

I don't remember exactly how they go, but they were eerily similar.

yeah...

if it's gonna be this kind of spookiness the whole waythrough, I probably won't read it, because i don't really like that kind of stuff, even though I know it'll be really good. nothing againstyou, personally...

and for some reason, I kept expectingthe Mawile to say. "Yes, my precious. They hates us, don't they?"

or something else Gollumish...:D

Saffire Persian
28th October 2005, 10:04 PM
Thanks for all the reviews... I was expecting so many, actually.


if it's gonna be this kind of spookiness the whole waythrough, I probably won't read it, because i don't really like that kind of stuff, even though I know it'll be really good. nothing againstyou, personally...

Ash_Junior: I can easily answer your question right now: and it's no. It is definitely not a full-fledged Horror story or anything like that. The Cave of Origin, I felt, deserved that kind of atmosphere and what I was trying to portray.

If it was like this the whole way through, I doubt I could do it. It's a mixture of different genre's, now that I think about it. The next chapter will probably set the tone of what the majority will be like. Thanks for reviewing. And yes, I wouldn't put it past her to say Gollum would. ^^; I love that character, though it has been awhile since I read the Hobbit.

XxSaberxX: I'm quote fond of the Mawile, too. I left it hanging whether she was unconscious, or dead as a doornail, so maybe she hasn't yet bit the dust. Thanks for reviewing! You have noo idea how much I appreciate it.

Sike: I must listen to that song! Yes, the Mawile is a good example of the mockery of innocence. I wanted a character like that in the Prologue, and after searching through the inhabitants of Origin Cave, and reading the Mawile's Pokedex entry, she was definitely the one. Thanks for reviewing.

Nirarekdan: A fellow Persian obsessor, I see! Thanks for reviewing. ^^

mindripper
28th October 2005, 10:34 PM
Hmm, you know something, I really like the title. One of my favourite phrases when I wrote essays for literature. A great attempt at descriptive writing, and I am truly glad to see that you have acquited yourself well. I like the format at the end, and would also like to see Castor fleshed out. Seems interesting. Good luck and carry on. Did I mention I like the title?

Ash_Junior
28th October 2005, 11:01 PM
yay!

then I'll keep reading.

this is a keeper, defintiely, saffire.

Saffire Persian
29th October 2005, 3:41 AM
mmm, you know something, I really like the title. One of my favourite phrases when I wrote essays for literature

It's one of my favorite phrases, too. For some reason, I like the more elegant sounding titles. (Perchance to Dream, A Simple Twist of Fate, Spiraling Eternity. Stuff like that.)... Dunno why. But thank you very much for the review.

Negrek
29th October 2005, 5:34 AM
Wow, this does look quite different than the FF.net version. There are fewer errors here, to be sure.

Somehow is only one word, though. Also, you don't need to use space between your elipses. Some words are still being misused here; one exapmle that I don't like in either version is the use of coalescing right there in the first paragraph. It's not technically wrong, but it's not technically right, either, since the water and dirt aren't really joining or fusing, simply being mixed. There's also stuff like torrential wind, which is just plain wrong. Also, I think you have a tendency to miss hyphens in compound words (rain-soaked, I'm pretty sure, should be hyphenated, as an example).

The second section has more errors, though they're in general different from the ones made in the FF.net versions. The bit error remains however--it should be had the absol not bitten him.

Rhythmatic's not a word. Rhythmic. Spellcheck should have caught that.

The quick attack paragraph has a bunch of stuff about the mawile's body that's reapeated and gets very garbled.

The falling scene was better, but that last paragraph of it was straight copied from the other version, wasn't it? How would Castor know that the mawile had gone limp and begun falling if he can only hear, not see her?

I do like this version much better than the last. In general, I think that you handled the actions better in this one, though some of the errors in it seem a bit silly. The falling scene could still use work, but it's better now--just a little confused in some of the action sequences.

BenJS
29th October 2005, 9:51 AM
Saw the preview at TPTF. Must say I'm impressed, this is great. Definately hope the Mawhile isn't dead, I'd love to see more of her.

Sorry for the lack of detail, but it's all been covered already, perhaps next time.

Saffire Persian
29th October 2005, 11:46 PM
Negrek: Thanks for reviewing again. This story is still nowhere near perfect, and I thank you for pointing out all those errors I seem to miss. I was unaware you didn't need the space in between the hyphens--my typing instructor always insisted that we do that, so I got into the habit. I'll try to get over it though, since it seems to be the proper way.

I was aware that rhythmatic was not a word, but I used it anyway - though rhythmic is definitely the right word for the situation, it just didn't occur to me to use it. "Spasmed" is also not a word, but I still used in the Prelude, as not of the synonyms for spasm sounded right to me. Hopefully, though, most people will forgive that stretch of license, if they even notice that at all.

And you're correct about the action scenes - I think they're the hardest thing for me to write most of the time, and I'm trying to get better at it. I'll change the text to fit your suggestions, which I appreciate, as I often can't see my own shortcomings. Thank you again.

BenJS: Personally, I'm grateful for any review, no matter how short. As for whether or not the Mawile's dead, well, I'll let you leave it to your imagination. I didn't expect that many people would like her. Thanks for your review.

Typhlogirl
30th October 2005, 4:21 AM
*applauds*

Well done. Truly a lovely entrance into this story. I must commended your description, it was very detailed, but not over the top. Perfect for getting an accurate pictures in my head. I actually like this style of morbidity, I find it interesting, and fun writing.

The mistakes I noticed:

The pattern continued as if in some malicious jest upon the inhabitants, helpless inhabitants, trapped in their pitiful dwellings.

Should be a comma between inhabitants and helpless, otherwise it sounds mixed up.

Gah, I saw another one, but I can't find it now.

Anyway, to sum up, excellent. Truly a fabulous start to what I hope will be a very good story. True, it did seem a bit long for a prelude, but meh. Kudos to you. Great job.

-;157;

P.S. Loved the musical terms for beginnings...:D

Kiyohime
30th October 2005, 5:22 AM
Saffire Persian, what a lovely way you have with the Mawile character. I found her character to be creepy, yet fascinating, with how she manages to be coy and demented at the same time, like a haunted doll. My favorite piece was when she was singing. ^^

Your description was astounding, particularly in the start where you described the lighting "teasing" the earth.

However, there WERE errors, as Negrek's pointed out, but they're minimal (forgive me if it's spelt wrong, my brain's a bowl of oatmeal at this time of the morning) and there were parts where the description seemed a little garbled, such as when the Absol and the Mawile were falling. May I suggest you try to explain the scenery a little more in depth during battles? I was unsure whether they were PHYSICALLY fallnig or it it was taking place in a mental otherworld. *feels silly*


I was also a little thrown off-guard by the Absol's name, because I couldn't help but think of castor oil every time I read it. But that's just me. ^^ I loved that little Absol rhyme you wrote. If only I could do rhymes like that, but as you see, the best I could come up with was "Akuma Akuma unlucky dumb old Akuma yah yah yah." XD

This is quite a creepy, scary piece of work you've done, especialy with the field where the bodies were pierced on the stone shards. Since you were. and are, so devoted to my story, I shall return the favor and follow this story also. ^^

Saffire Persian
30th October 2005, 9:25 PM
Typlogirl: I also stupidly repeated myself in that sentence you quoted, whether you noticed it or not... I shall go and kill that as we speak, and add in the comma. And yes, the Prelude is a bit long as far as Prologue's go, but I see the Prelude as actually something in between an actual chapter and a prologue. You'll see what I mean whenever the next chapter comes out. Thank you so much for your reviews!

Scrap: Thanks for pointing those mistakes out.. I'm trying to make this as good as I possibly can, and every bit of help I can receive towards the story, helps a lot. Glad you like the Mawile character... everybody seems to be fascinated with her. ^^

Nirarekdan
31st October 2005, 1:24 AM
A fellow Persian obsessor, I see! Thanks for reviewing. ^^

Obsessor is an understatement. :D And you're welcome. Titles like these catch my eye, too, and I'm glad I saw this one!

Saffire Persian
31st October 2005, 10:32 PM
^^; Glad you liked the title... Obsessor as an understatement? ^^ I believe that. I'm a Persian fanatic.. now if only they hadn't been given the Absol history of doom and destruction.. or I would've used them instead of Absol. ^^

Calcos the Destroyer
1st November 2005, 11:21 PM
Oh God! *dies*

Woah. This is one frell of a story you have here. And it includes Absol! Yippee!

Hidden Mew
2nd November 2005, 12:30 AM
Wow. This is a really great story you have here. I thought that the describtion was perfect. I love what I see of Castor's personality so far already. You would think that an Absol would have horrible visions like that and feel like this. Anyway, wonderful story and I look foreword to reading more of it.

Saffire Persian
3rd November 2005, 10:09 PM
Calcos: Thank you. It means a lot. I love Absol, too.. Absolutely awesome things.

Hidden Mew: Thanks. If I wasn't in Nanowrimo right now I'd have already reviewed your story, but I will soon enough.. you'll just have to forgive the lag.

And Nirarekdan: If you have a story, I have not seen it. But I real review if you have one.. just post a link or something.

Nirarekdan
5th November 2005, 1:22 AM
My story's in the Non-Pokemon section. Anyway, I'm really looking forward to the next chapter. From the quote in your siggy, it sounds interesting...

Saffire Persian
8th November 2005, 10:21 PM
Well, the First chapter should be up momentarily.. it's going through the editing process.

Insincerus
17th November 2005, 5:13 AM
Ew. Me. God. O.o

Saffire, that was EXCELLENT. I sooo envy you for your powerful description! You just lit that entire prelude on fire with kerosene and dripping words of uberness. You got this cat's tongue for sure. The description of the Absol and its feelings, the poisoned-honey Mawile, and the mangled scene of bodies, occurrences, visions, and practically everything that needed to be told was there, and I find no mistake in it whatsoever, though I found like, two misspelled words (which not be important). You would kick my arse in a writing contest any day ;-;

Fantastic. I will be watching this thread.

~TCC

katiekitten
18th November 2005, 1:10 PM
Wow... This is really amazing.

Nice and spooky, described well, and I loved that little chant that the Mawile created. This looks to go far, and I will definently be there for the ending. Well done! :)

Saffire Persian
19th November 2005, 1:10 AM
The Cheshire Cat: Thanks, I'm glad you liked it. Hopefully the next chapter won't disappoint, though at this point and time, though it's already written, it's no where near post worthy. As for beating you in a Writing Contest? Doubt it. ^^ Thanks for the review.

Katiekitten: Everybody likes the Mawile, sheeesh. Maybe I'll have to spare her from an untimely death then *idea sparks* ... XD... That would be good. Of course, what happens to he and the Mawile likely won't be had until far into the future.

Chaos Absol
19th November 2005, 2:55 AM
o.o


This thing has already tied as my favorite because it includes everything perfect and absol.Absol is my fav poke of all time, and mawile was like a demented haunt-happy doll.Awsome.It has the horro bit too, an added bonus.I hope you keep on writing, because I want to keep on reading.Thanks for making my day!

Saffire Persian
20th November 2005, 11:04 PM
Haunt happy? XD.. Guess it was. Thanks for your review - and yes, I'm working on chapter one as we speak...along with the rest of the story.

Xiang
7th December 2005, 1:55 AM
You were kind enough to give me a review, now I shall return the favor.

This is truly amazing work. Your descriptions are vivid and plentiful, your sentences vary in structure, and the plot, originality, and length were all things I underestimated. You have awed me. ^^


The stars and moon were all but gone, swallowed entirely by the dark, malicious clouds that now blanketed the sky above the city. They were greedy, swallowing everything that came into their path, blanketing the world below in darkness.


Beautiful, but the word "dark" was repeated. Perhaps "blanketing the world below in shadow" would help?

Overall, you scored a fantastic A! ^^

Ratiasu

whit19
7th December 2005, 2:41 AM
Ya know... Now that I actually went into this thread I rememba readin part of the prelude way back when the preview was in the author's cafe forum. lol, I didn't know you was the one who wrote it Saffire! :p

The description was beautiful, dark and it flowed together perfectly to me. God, you make it look so damn easy, I only wish I could write like you. :)

Well... At least I was lucky enough to be paired up with ya. *Does a James Brown dance*

*Sees several guys glare at him evilly*

She's mine damnit! You can't have her. :p

Saffire Persian
7th December 2005, 10:42 PM
Thanks for the favor, Ratiasu.

Whit: XD... I NEED to finish betaing your Slayers fic! Gah! I forgot all about it.. too much making banners, too little editing. Sorry.

Saffire Persian
13th December 2005, 1:42 AM
A/N Here it is.. chapter one. This was actually supposed to be a part of a longer chapter, but since I'm doing a few different projects for Christmas, along with an AP psych class, I didn't have a ton of time. So, this chapter's a bit shorter then I would have liked. Plus, the old version of it looked it had been run through the paper shredder so I pretty much had to rewrite the whole chapter. No doubt there are mistakes.. as my proof reading eye isn't as great as I'd like. Nevertheless, I hope you enjoy, although I don't quite feel it's on par with the Prologue .

Also of note, the beginning of this chapter is different than was previously posted, due to some critique I received, I decided to write a new section. Whether this was silly on my part or not, I guess I'll find out.


Part I: Bound

Chapter 1:

Overture

An instrumental Composition intended especially as an introduction to an extended work.

++

Continuing to fall, Castor tried to regain some sense of mobility, as the odd feeling in his limbs and body faded away, replaced by the absolute weariness that seemed to accompany every use of the Swords Dance. The adrenaline that had once been flowing through his veins – from the Swords Dance as well as by the natural panic that had overtaken him when the Mawile had attacked – was now subsiding. Now, he was consciously aware of the pain from his paw coming in frequent, sharp jolts.

Castor’s breathing slowed, gritting his teeth to try and dismiss the pain as best he could as continued to fall. Now that the Mawile was - at least - incapacitated for the moment, he wouldn't have to worry about being followed. Castor closed his eyes, trying to concentrate once more on his place of destination, imagining every detail of horrid place with all the attention he could muster, while trying to ignore the pain coursing through his leg.

He could feel the dark aura of the Faint Attack begin to surround him, enveloping him in the shadows as he phased away into the realm that he had been in moments before. It took only moments of strained concentration for him to come out of the limbo, emerging back into existence with a loud crack that rebounded of the walls. Once more, he found himself falling.

Except, this time, the ground was there to break his fall.

He slammed into it, shoulder first, plowing through the shards of sharp rocks that were littered about the ground. He didn’t even have time to cry out in pain as his head met the rocky wall, and his leg was no better off from the endeavor. His mind began to swim, accompanied by the pain issuing from his leg – which had not in the least appreciated the jarring movements from the fall and landing – and the weariness that had now overtaken his body.

So, it was no surprise to Castor that he felt unconsciousness setting in, looming over him like a great bird of prey, waiting, watching, as his swimming vision erupted into black dots. He did not fight the impending nothingness as his vision wavered and dimmed. He could barely think coherently, and the sleep that came from unconsciousness seemed welcoming.

As his mind drifted, his eye lids closing over red, narrowed eyes, his thoughts couldn’t help but travel back to the time when this had all began, and he began to dream.

It had all began with a dream, so perhaps it was fitting that it ended with one.



&&&

Falling, falling, falling, falling…

Castor abruptly awoke, his voice, which had uttered a loud explanation, now fading into a ghostly whimper. His eyes were wide and narrowed, and his breath was coming in harsh gasps. It took him a moment to realize he was sitting up, his mind trying desperately to recall the events that he had just experienced. He distinctly remembered the last moments of his dream.

He had cried out.

He had also been running through a slew of hard rain and wind.

He had been panicked about something.

Faces, he had seen faces, bloody and gashed.

Anger.

Singing. A scream. Silence.

But in a moment, the memories were gone, the rest of them fading into nothing, like sand through a crack. Slowly, Castor was forced to take in what reality lay before him. He found that he was shaking, cold sweat drenching his snow-white fur, but he found no reason for it; he was afraid, even though he was safely enclosed within the Absol civilization; cold, even though he clad in thick fur meant to brave the elements; alone, despite the fact his brother lay beside him, deep within the realm of sleep.

Shaking his head, Castor tried to grasp the fleeting remnants of the dream, but they, like the rest, were slipping through the cracks, until he was, as always, left with nothing: he was a sufferer without a cause. Only the feelings of fear and dread lingered, for the body could not forget what was instilled in it, even if it could not remember how it had come about; after all, one did not forget the feel of pain, even if the cause was all but forgotten. But that did not help Castor -- it did not tell him why.

He strove to understand, because without understanding, he felt like he was bound with untruth. But how could he understand if he knew nothing? For this reason, part of him wanted to remember every minute detail, down to the last piece of bone, even though he knew deep within himself that whatever he unearthed would not be pleasant. The other half of him, the piece of his soul that was just as young as his body, wanted nothing to do with it, recoiling away from each notion of recall like a Togepi from rotting flesh. That half of him wanted nothing more then to run to his mother for comfort, even though he couldn’t allow himself to do so. He hadn’t run to his mother’s side since he was forced into the start of his Absol independence after eight months under his parents’ care, along with his brother.

Such was the way of the Absol clan.

Independence was stressed. Learn to walk on your own four paws, they said. When you have the ability to walk, use it. To have others carry you is to be lame.

Castor shuffled his paws in a melancholy frustration through the fur bedding till the tips of his claws met the hard rock, stilling as the body of his brother moved, his red face becoming even more apparent in the dying sunset light filtering in from the entrance to the den.

A picture suddenly seared through his brain, as intense and blazing as a flame: it was a picture of a face not unlike his own, rivulets of red coursing down it, seeping into the skin and dyeing it red. Castor jerked, but latched on to the gruesome imagery with a fervid determination. The magnetic gaze drew him in, and he was as reluctant to let it go as it skewed and twisted, becoming more distorted then it already was. He could barely discern the features, now fuzzy and marred by earthy shards.

But if he knew anything, he knew the figure was dead. No one could look like that and not be dead.

It was a start; it was something. Something to distinguish himself from the rest.

“Castor?”

Castor jumped automatically, head jerking around to the voice of the speaker, another shot of adrenaline coursing through his body at the sudden fright. Heart thumping in his chest, Castor found his brother, Pollux, looking at him, his features unreadable, although his jade eyes were piercing, like they always were. More often then not, Castor found himself wondering whether his brother could see through him.

“It’s nothing. Just a dream... nothing but a dream,” Castor slowly replied, trying to add surety to his faltering tone.

“Mmm…” Pollux absently turned his head to where the remains of the dying sky were shining through. His voice was monotone, revealing nothing. “Do you remember anything?”

Castor shook his head. “… well, not really. No.” The dead face flashed through his mind again. He doubted it would go away now.

His brother favored him with another piercing glance, but only for a few moments. Pollux’s head was once again resting on his paws, and he curled into a tighter ball, eyes closing. “Then it is of no consequence.”

It is of no consequence… That was what Pollux always said, never actively pursuing anything that came before him. Pollux never badgered him, interrogated him, or anything of the like during the course of his life, he just watched – always watched with those jade eyes that seemed not his own. In some ways, Castor always felt a slight tinge of disappointment at Pollux’s answers, as if his heart expected him to say something different. Although, Castor thought, I have given him no reason to.

It is of no consequence.

Was it? Was it really?

“Go back to sleep, Castor,” Pollux continued, staring out the exit of their tiny den once more. “The moon hasn’t even risen yet.”

Castor watched Pollux curl deeper into the bedding, feeling suddenly empty, while at the same time finding the flitting rays of sunset strangely unwelcoming. He didn’t want to go back to sleep. He doubted that sleep really did anything for him at all. Castor then vaguely wondered if any of the other Absol slept. He knew that foresight – visions, the knowing of the unknown -- were something to his kind, though he had never heard another say anything about it: it was a kind of instinctive intelligence that he knew from the time he was born and was only later certified as truth. It was the same kind of intelligence he and the rest of his kind possessed concerning the weather -- a certain change in air pressure could mean rain and thunder, or an updraft of cold air could signal a storm, even if it was days in advance. It was intelligence that was often without truth or founding, but was there. Never had he known those predictions to be wrong.

What Castor didn’t quite understand was why his kind insisted on keeping everything to themselves. It was a mystery to him that he hoped to later uncover. Though as time went by Castor found, somewhat to his dismay, he was showing the same characteristics, yet he didn’t know why. This bothered him, almost as much as the marred face did now.

Castor looked over at his brother again, not bothering to take up Pollux’s command. Instead, he stared blankly at the den’s wall, as if by doing so, he would stumble upon some revelation. The bedding shuffled, and a few minutes went by before finally his brother spoke again.

“Do you want me to get Mother for you?” Pollux made a movement to stand.

Castor’s face showed a brief flash of emotion at the mention of his mother, her lithe, outlandish frame filling his mind. Castor’s feature’s brightened.

Learn to walk on your own four paws. To have others carry you is to be lame.

His face fell, and he felt his brother staring at him. Pollux said something that Castor did not catch, though the sound of his voice, level and steady, betraying no emotion, was enough to snap Castor out of some sort of some impending thought. Castor met his brother’s eyes. “No,” he said, finally. “I think… I think everything will be fine now."

Pollux gazed at him blankly, as if trying to discern his twin’s emotions. “As you will.”

Instead of lying back down, the red-skinned Absol moved purposefully towards the den’s exit, out into the twilight that was fast ushering in the moon. Pollux didn’t even look at him as he walked past.

“Where are you going?” Castor found himself asking.

“Out,” he answered, shrugging. “I can’t find sleep any longer, so there’s no use trying. Are you staying?”

“For a time, anyway,” Castor said dismissively. “I’ll find you later.”

“As you wish.”

Pollux continued to move toward the exit, but just as he reached the outlet, he stopped, and turned toward him once more.

“Castor.”

“Yes?”

“You said you couldn't remember?”

“I did.”

“Do you want to remember?”

Pollux didn't even bother to hear whatever Castor's reply might have been, leaving Castor to stare at the wall of their small den and wonder.

Do I?

whit19
13th December 2005, 2:37 AM
Ha! First to review!

Nice chapter. As always it was beautifully written. It was very mysterious and it made me think. (lol, somethin I neva do.). I didn't see any spellin errors. It looked perfect to me. The endin like the prologue made me wonder what will happen to Castor next. I can't wait!

SnoringFrog
13th December 2005, 2:56 AM
A picture suddenly seared from his brain, as intense and blazing like a flame

Shouldn't it be "as intense and blazing as a flame" or "intense and blazing like a flame"? I don't think what you have sounds quite right.

[QUOTE]Castor found his brother, Pollux,[QUOTE]

I expected as much. As soon as I saw the name Castor I began wondering if you'd have a Pollux. Named after the Gemini twins no doubt.

[QUOTE]as if trying to discern his twin’s emotions.[QUOTE]

So, they are twins as well, just as their starry counterparts. Should've thought of that, but I didn't.


Sounds interesting, Saff. It's about an absol, so of course I'm intersted in it. NOw I wondering how the gaps between vision and reality are to be filled. In an intriguing way, most likely, but as to how exactly I am completely lost.


BTW, I know you reviewd my fic, but since you only did the first chap, whenever you get the chance cold you please do the rest as well? I'm in the process of revising it and I need as many opinions as I can get.

Kiyohime
13th December 2005, 2:59 AM
OOOOOOOhhhhh....so they're named after the Gemini twins! I never realized that. How clever! o.o Bravo. ^^

Sike Saner
13th December 2005, 3:14 AM
Okay. Pollux fascinates the frell out of me. It took you only one chapter of his presence to achieve that, wihch is QUITE boss. I like the look into Absol society you're presenting. Things are nicely described, and the introspective looks behind Castor's eyes are intriguing. He's shaping up to be an intersting character, that's for sure. But Lord, am I hooked by Pollux...


Pollux continued to move toward the exit, but just as he reached the outlet, he stopped, and turned toward him once more.

“Castor.”

“Yes?”

“You said you cannot remember?”

“I did.”

“Do you want to remember?”

And there, in a nutshell, is why. Bossness. ^_^

Ash_Junior
13th December 2005, 3:19 AM
like I said before, this looks like a keeper.

not very long (compared to my stuff :D), but just long enough to get the job done.

I liked the way you made a culture for the Absol as a whole.

took me a little hwile to realize that Pollux was shiny.

btw, are you gonna have all your main chars be named after Greek mythology?

just wondering.

Nirarekdan
13th December 2005, 4:04 AM
I liked it. I'm hooked by both Absol, personally. No spelling mistakes... grammar's good... Thumbs up! ^u^

Chaos Absol
13th December 2005, 4:27 AM
I JUST noitced near the end that his brother was a shiny.I think you should change the part where it says there twins, because if one is half red and green eyes and the other is half white and red eyes, that doesn't really look alike.

I like how Pollux' is so calm about everything, it seems as if he is smarter but not showing it.I wonder where hes going, maybe somewhere importent.

Hope l get to read more soon, because this is good.I liked the length as well, it more fits to what l usually read.


Cya next chappie!

Ash_Junior
13th December 2005, 4:28 AM
Chaos, not ALL twins look a like.

forget what that's called, but it's a condition.

I think that most twins don't look a lot like each other.

SnoringFrog
13th December 2005, 12:12 PM
took me a little hwile to realize that Pollux was shiny.

What? Pollux was a shiny? *goes back to re-read the end* Wow, I missed that. Guess that explains the green eyes then.

Xiang
13th December 2005, 9:05 PM
“No,” he said, finally. “I think… I think everything will be fine now.

Shouldn't there be a quotation mark after the end?

Actually, really, I don't mind the length (because today was a long day and if this was a really long chapter, I would've groaned and saved it for later XD). Short and sweet. Overall really good.

Agh, can't really give criticism (because I liked the length). Or maybe it's because I'm really worn out now. See you later, and thanks for the PM!

Hidden Mew
13th December 2005, 10:41 PM
Great first chapter. I loved the way that you described all of the surroundings. I also thought that it was interesting that you defined the Absol culture. The names are really neat too. I didn't even noticed when I was reading it that Pollux is a shiny. That is also really cool. I can't wait for the next chapter and please feel free to send me a message for the next chapter.

Saffire Persian
14th December 2005, 12:45 AM
SnoringFrog: Thanks for the review, when I get the time, I will review your story. As for your questions:


Shouldn't it be "as intense and blazing as a flame" or "intense and blazing like a flame"? I don't think what you have sounds quite right.

It could go either way, but I meant like.


So, they are twins as well, just as their starry counterparts. Should've thought of that, but I didn't.

Ding! The prize goes to you on that one. I named them after that particular constellation. And as for the shiny bit, I only decided to make Pollux shiny because of how Pollux (the star) is described as a "red star". I saw the shiny Absol was red, and I was like, "I have to make him shiny!"

Sike: Thanks so much for the review again... Glad you like Pollux ^^.. He's one of my favorites myself. ... and I have nothing more to say.. boing!

Ash_Junior: I was wondering if anyone would notice that Pollux is shiny.... but yeah, he is. As for the names, not after Greek names persay. It is true that that some of the names in the story (The Absol, at least) might be Greek, but in truth, they are named after stars and constellations. For instance, Pollux and Castor's father is named Kaitos - which is part of a constellation.

Chaos Absol: Yes, Pollux is very quiet and observant.. g lad you saw that, it was what I was trying to portray. And yes, I realize they don't look like each other, and AJ's right in saying that not all twins look alike - the term is Fraternal , which is what Castor and Pollux are.

Ratiasu:
No,” he said, finally. “I think… I think everything will be fine now.

Shouldn't there be a quotation mark after the end?


No. His statement "I think everything will be fine now." Is not a question - a statement rather. If I wanted Castor to sound more unsure, maybe I would've put a question mark for emphasis, but really, it's just a plain statement.

To everyone else: Thanks for the reviews. And to all the Closet Readers out there, thanks for reading.

SnoringFrog
14th December 2005, 1:50 AM
No. His statement "I think everything will be fine now." Is not a question - a statement rather. If I wanted Castor to sound more unsure, maybe I would've put a question mark for emphasis, but really, it's just a plain statement.


Saff, you might want to look at what Ratiasu said again. It says QUOTATION MARK not question mark.

Saffire Persian
14th December 2005, 2:10 AM
Ah, she's right then. ^^

katiekitten
14th December 2005, 1:10 PM
Brilliant. Pure magic. I absolutely loved this chapter. It was cleverly written, beautifully written, and I loved every second of it. I like Pollux's character, he has a nice perosnality from what I saw. So that was all a dream before? It makes sence... Very well done and I can't wait for the next chappie! :)

Xiang
14th December 2005, 8:58 PM
Aye, it's alright, I was kinda weirded out for a sec when I saw your post...o_O

Saffire Persian
15th December 2005, 2:38 AM
Mhm.. I've also been wrong in my assumptions twice. Upon reading through the chapter in hopes to edit once more, I noticed that SnoringFrog was also right in his observations after reading the context... like does sound odd there.. Makes me feel stupid... ^^

Negrek
15th December 2005, 3:22 AM
Well, I must admit that after waiting for such a considerable time for this chapter it has a surprising number of errors. Briefly:


It took him a moment to realize he was sitting up, his mind trying desperately to recall the events of which he had just experienced.
The last part of this sentence ("of which he had just experienced") doesn't make much sense and is garbled. Try something simpler like "the events that he had just experienced".



Faces, he had seen faces, bloody and gashed.




Shaking his head, Castor tried to grasp the fleeting remnants of the dream, but they, like the rest, were flying away, vanishing like a horde of transparent butterflies, until he was, as always, left with nothing: he was a sufferer without a cause.
"Horde of transparent butterflies" made me giggle. Not the impression you were trying to give?


Only the feelings of fear and dread lingered, for the body could not forget what was instilled in it, even if it could not remember; after all, one did not forget the feel of pain, even if the cause was all but forgotten.
That's a paradox (stripped down, it says that the body could not forget but it couldn't remember). I don't know if that was your intent, so if it's not, then consider rewording.



A picture suddenly seared from his brain, as intense and blazing as a flame: it was a picture of a face not unlike his own, rivulets of red coursing down that face, seeping into the skin and dyeing it red.
I don't think that seared from his brain is the way to go here... also, I'd suggest "it" to go in for the second mention of face here. But points for spelling it dyeing and actually having it be right in context.


It was unrecognizable enough that he would not to be able to pick out a face of the owner if he wanted to, yet it wasn’t so vague for him to dismiss it as nothing.

I don't really know what you're saying there.


Something to differ himself from the rest.
I don't believe that differ is the best word there. Perhaps something more like distinguish?

- You seem to be getting then and than mixed up. Then is used only to indicate the passage of time or the order of events. By contrast, than is used when comparing two things. For example, "It then became blacker than the purest obsidian," or something similarly silly.


Just a dream... nothing but a dream
You did most of your elipses right, but you seem to have missed those ;).


That was what Pollux always said, never actively pursuing anything that came before him.


Castor then vaguely wondered if any of the other Absol slept. He knew that foresight – visions – the knowing of the unknown -- were something to his kind, though he had never heard another say anything about it: it was a kind of instinctive intelligence that he knew from the time he was born and was only later certified as truth.
I'd suggest a comma between visions and "the knowing of the unknown" as well. Obviously, this is also quite a long sentence.


Instead, he stared blankly at the den’s wall, allowing the streaks of red, purple, and gold to play across his face.
If he's staring at the wall (thus turned towards it) how can the sunset's light be playing across his face? The sunset is behind him, and the wall is presumeably not reflective.




Castor’s face showed a brief flash of emotion at the mention of his mother, her lithe, outlandish frame filling his mind.
Outlandish? It's not wrong, but it seems an odd word. Just wondering what makes her outlandish.



Instead of lying back down, the red-skinned Absol strove purposefully towards the den’s exit, out into the twilight that was fast ushering in the moon.
I don't think that strove fits here; to my mind, it implies too much struggle or undue hard work. Pollux seems like a cool cat, not someone who would make it obvious that he was working hard to gain something--and it seems odd that he would be having difficulty reaching the exit of the den. I actually thought that this was just a typo for "strode" when I first read it, until seeing that word used not much later.

So, anyway, I overall liked this chapter. I was a bit disappointed by the whole dream sequence thing--it's always kind of a letdown to have someone set you up with a real good cliffhanger, and then come back with the good ol' "Oh, don't worry about it, it was just a dream." It's a minor gripe and a personal preference, but meh.

Pollux seems an interesting character. Your description of him makes him vaguely sinister--there seems an odd detachment between the brothers, though you'd expect them to be very close to one another, having grown up together and all. And yet Castor seems hardly to know or understand Pollux. An interesting dynamic, possibly resulting from the Absol clan's fierce independence? I did like that part--it seems very fitting for the species.

An enjoyable read and a nice, slow introduction to the characters. You've improved a great deal from what I can remember of your first fanfic.

Saffire Persian
15th December 2005, 11:13 PM
Negrek: Thanks so much for reviewing again..and absolutely proving I have a horrible proof-reading eye. There's a few reasons it has so many errors.. Which, I am not very proud of.. the first of which is that I used this story for Nanowrimo (The Goal is to write 50,000 words in a month), so really, I hadn't touched Chapter 1 since I first wrote it when November started until the very beginnings of December... and to tell the truth, I knew it had been a long time in coming, and I pushed myself to get a chapter out, which I had to totally redo. Personally, I'm rather ashamed that there were so many errors, and thanks so much for pointing them out. The next chapter, I hope, will be better in that category... as I won't rush myself this time.

And yes, the cliffhanger. Well, there were a few ways I could have started out this story - one of which was to directly continue on from the now "Dream Sequence" and go about what happens after, and it would have very likely ended up back here after that scene concluded... it was one of my options, but I decided not to for various reasons, which may or may not be better in the long run, though I hope it will be for the best, though I suppose I could put in the original beginning I had for it that would help close the cliffhanger a tad.. *shruggs*

When you pointed out "Outlandish" as an odd word to describe Castor's mother, I can see where you're coming from, and perhaps a different word would be better, but though his mother may not seem "outlandish" to, say, Pokemon Trainers or the like, she does seem very outlandish to the Absol in this clan - even to her own sons, because, as I will go into in future chapters, because she is an "Outsider", as in, she came into the Clan some years previous, which is not a very common occurrence, and thus her bloodline is a bit different from the Absol portrayed here. So the Absol view her as a bit outlandish . . . although maybe there's a word better for this situation.

And as for Castor and Pollux's relationship, well, it's an odd one, I'll say that much.

Again, thanks so much for pointing out all those errors.

Air Dragon
17th December 2005, 10:10 PM
O.O............................................... ....whoa.

This is deep. Something real deep. I like the way you made Pollux...so deep and unburdened. He cares for Castor but won't bug him about his problems. Castor too is very cool. All in all, very nice work. Not my kind of fic, but you're seriously getting me hooked. Later!

Saffire Persian
18th December 2005, 5:10 AM
Very observant of you, there. Thanks for reviewing. I understand if it's not your type of fic, some people don't like Pokemon POVs. Ah well, can't please everybody.

Air Dragon
18th December 2005, 7:49 AM
Don't get me wrong... the POV aspect is cool. Getting wrapped around mystery is awesome too. It's just the dark and (uh, macabre a good word here?) start has me a little wowed. i like where this is going. An Absol who wishes not to be a bringer of Disaster is cool. I like Castor's desire to fight against the world's idea of him. it's cool, and i'll keep reading to see if he'll make it. Later!
P.S. I'm also thinking of a short Pokemon POV sometime next year. This vac seems to be all about typing...heh, heh.

Saffire Persian
18th December 2005, 11:11 PM
I'll look forward to that Pokemon POV of yours - I like those. Hopefully you'll write it sometime in the very near future.

blackemerald
19th December 2005, 1:30 PM
Since you gave my preview a shot, I only thought it would be fair if I gave your fic a shot. Absol-utly beautiful.*Hides face after saying pun* The description was lovely and set the mood perfectly for the mysterious feel. Your charaters are lovely although I can't really see where the plot is heading. Negrek has already pointed out your mistakes so all I can really say is good luck with this fic!

Saffire Persian
20th December 2005, 11:18 PM
Mm... The plot is coming - the Prelude alluded to the plot.. though It'll take a few chapters to really get into it. Thanks for reviewing.

Calcos the Destroyer
27th December 2005, 4:43 AM
*Appears out of Wormhole* OOOFFF!! Hey I can control these! ....Hey, I remember this! *reads* WHOA. Seriously whoa. Great introduction to Pollux, I now have gruesome images dancing in my head due to their dreams! AAAK!! *poof*

BenJS
27th December 2005, 7:18 AM
Good chapter. Too short for my liking, but then again I'm the type who absolutely loves ten thousand word chapters. But not to worry, if the length fits then use it I always say...well not really, but you get the point.

I kind of caught on that Pollux was a shiny at the mention of his face. Also on the topic of Pollux, I love his personality. That quiet-observant, slightly detached kind of personality always attracts me, and his is rather like my own. I like the names, by the way, though I know nothing of astrology astronomy, so the origins of their names escaped me.

So it was all a dream, or was it a vision of what’s to come? The former would be rather disappointing as Negrek said. But does this mean that the mawhile isn’t gone, at least not for now?

Anyway, it’s good and I look forward to the next instalment. ‘til next time then.

cyndaquil_dratini
27th December 2005, 7:53 AM
Hey Saffire, after you made my banner, I decided to come and have a look at your story. I read it twice, resorting to just skimming over it, because it seemed so hard to immerse myself in it. It's not easy reading, it's not an airport novel...you know those things...I've forgotten the metaphor, but yeah. Today, I read it again, and sunk into it comfortably. I inalyl understood what was going on, and I love it. I love the dark, (I'm gonna steal that other guys word) macabre sense you're bringing to the whole thing, and the snese of mystery. The story hasn't even really started yet, so I'll be interested to see how the plot shapes up.

I'll just go through and quote things I liked, and some things which I thought made it a little difficult to read the first time through. I commend you and revere you, simply because I noticed, as I was reading the prologue, that it was last edited earlier today. That's amazing, very professional, nothing like anything I could do. Fr that reason, I was going to go through and point out some spellign mistakes I found, but I was skimming to get the quotes (again) and I couldn't find them. They are there, somewhere....

Anyway, yeah, I'll just go thrugh the whole thign and comment on each piece of writing I'd like to comment on- as opposed to splitting all my comments into nice and nasty things, I'll go through everything in chronological order- I always find it easier when reviewers do it like that. I've probably noticed lots more bad things than good things, but that's because they're easier to find when you're skimming- and the fact that i have given you such a good review is proof that I loved it, if I didnt love every sentence of it. Right, here it is then...


Thunder rumbled ominously across the midnight sky, while chilling rain pelted the earth below, mixing with the soggy dirt and grass. The wind was a violent maelstrom of activity, swirling and buffeting all the unfortunates that had chosen to weather out the storm, outside and unprotected. The sky above was clouded, darkened with a thousand shades of black. The stars and moon were all but gone, swallowed entirely by the dark, malicious clouds that now blanketed the sky above the city. They were greedy, swallowing everything that came into their path, blanketing the world below in darkness.

First paragraph- it's wonderful. Really descriptive, very evocative. I can tell you went to a lot of effort to make this paragraph so beautiful. However, the first two times I read it, it turned me off the whole story immediatly. I think the biggest problem you have as a writer is that you tend to use too many adjectives, and the reader gets bogged down in imagining it all at once. An example of this is when you say things like "dark, malicious clouds" where you could just choose one, and say "malicious clouds" instead. Simplifying text is a good way of making description more powerful to readers, bcause they pick it up wuicker. Don't make descriptions too difficult to imagine, they should be as easy as possible to conjure up in someones mind.
I loved "They were greedy" talking about the clouds, that was the best description in your entire story so far, really evocative, I understood what you meant straight away. However, you went on to explain it- "swallowing everythign that came into their path"..which was kind of already there, and didn't really need to be said- another way to simplify a description- and you had already used swallowing in the sentence before. Using the same word twice in short succession is the simplest way of destroying its meaning to the reader- once you've read swallowing already, it doesn't provoke such a strong image the second time. Get rid of one of them, and replace it with something that means the same thing.


The thunder’s voice seemed to echo that statement, voice laced with unprecedented malice. It was mocking them, especially mocking him.

I love personification usually, but "especially mocking him" doesn't make sense to me. Who's "him"? Is it the clouds? Is it castor, before you've introduced him? This is another example of overdescription- just keep it simple, don't make it too hard to understand.


For what?

A friend. A light in the darkness.

I love how Castor is askign himself questions- it makes a reader ask the same question. This is one bit that grabbed my attention when I first skimmed through- a light in the darkness, kind of corny, but also reminded me of Alexi's dream, so I can't really talk.


All of his attention had been devoted to that one task: finding her. It was a simple task that anyone should have been able to do. But he had failed . . . again.

I love the fact we don't know who "she" is. Grabbed my attention right away.


To think the things that occurred in the realm of imaginary could be so much more terrible than the things that existed realm of reality.

This is a lovely idea, and I can get what you're trying to say, but the wording makes it hard to understand, which isn't good. It seems liek the sentence isn't finished yet. Maybe just word it differently.


Even the dark could not protect him from the scene before him. Castor saw the blood, the twisted bodies, and most of all, the shadowed faces in all their hellish glory. He had seen this all before, but that did not take away the sting – the sting the pain, fear, and revulsion that he had been left to deal with from the first encounter.

Here's another example of over-description. "protect him from the scene before him" is kind of an overuse of "him", but "the sting(add a comma here), the pain, (the?)fear and revulsion that he had been left to deal with from the first encounter.- is too complicated. Sting, fear and pain are all good words, but are overused and so lose their effect. revulsion is great- but they're dead bodies, maybe a bit more emphasis on the revulsion would be better. Emphasis is somethign you tend to lose track of too- make sure you know exactly what picture you want your readers to have in their head after they're read something, so that they're left with powerful words that make an impact, and understand what's going on. That happened in the beginning part where Absol was on a rooftop as well- it took me a while to realise Absol was on a roftop, I had to keep reminding myself of it. Maybe that's because you forget yourself, when you're writing.


points as sharp as a Scyther’s blades,

I love your pokemon anthropomorphism- only person I know to be able to pull it off and not seem corny, this description was so effective. Pokemon anthropomorphism is a long word...pokopomorphism is better. I'll say that from now on.


He threw his spirit body aside, tearing himself away from the fibers that bound him to this alternate reality.

Here's another bit where I got confused. A bit more emphasis on the "comign back to reality" part and less emphasis on the spirit body and the fibers- maybe don't use spirit body. it's really clever, but it confuses people. use mind, or something lik that instead, it'd make it easier to understand.


The darkness that pervaded the cave was like a voluminous ebony cloak, thick and suffocating, chasing away any light that dared to try to shine through.

More overdescription. You just don't need to use two adjectives to describe things all the time- "volumnious, ebony cloak"- either of those adjectives is great, but both kidn of takes away from the overall description, and just makes the sentence look more intelligent and wordy, rather than being more evocative. I think more 'as...as a...' descriptions would be good too- at the moment youre using lots of 'like a...' and 'was a...'- similies and metaphors, yeah, i know what they're called, I just forgot.


The pathway was beginning to spiral downwards, a chill wind blowing from some unseen crack in the cavern’s walls.

This is the first time you mention that the cave is in a spiral, and is heading downwards. That's really not clear enough in my mind for the next bit, which really relies on readers having a clear vision of a spiral cave which you could fall into, I only got that the third time I read it- another emphasis thing.


His stability and sense of balance broken, Castor was only quick enough to avoid a lethal blow to the neck, the vice-like jaws instead snapping over his right forepaw with a hard, sickening crunch.

This whole action sequence is kind of unclear and uses way too much description to be followed with as much excitement as you need to carry it off. especially in action scenes, strip the description down to a bare minimum, so that readers can follow everything, and it can all seem to happen very quickly. Also, try to avoid these Matrix/Jackie Chan-style action sequences, because they require too much description to be carried off in writing (they're only good on screen, when you can see everything that happens, and know exactly what it is right away).


The great brown jaws spat out a great clump of white fur

I loved this bit. Just so....evocative. See how such small, simple words create such a vivd image? Really, really impressive stuff, this. Oh- cept you used 'great' once too many times. Just replace it with a different word.


It was a feminine voice, as sweet and pure as honey. A sweet fragrance reminiscent of wildflowers seemed to fill the air at the Mawile’s words as she twirled around, her second jaw making a clip clip noise.

"As sweet and as pure as honey" is way overused, but it still worked. Maybe cut one of the adjective out- I wonder fi you really did think of the voice as pure, or were just running with the cliche. What else is honey, which relates to this voice? I think honey is a great way of describing it- the voice is sickly, golden, dripping, deep, sticky...etcetera, etcetera. It just makes description so much more effective if you always think of an unusual way to describe something. Also, "wildflowers" seemed unnecessary and very corny. Just "flowers" would suffice- what difference does it make here that they're wildflowers? maybe even wild flwoers would be better than wildflowers. It's just so corny.


The Mawile noticed the Absol’s perplexed expression. Her grin became wider. Her angelic appearance was beginning to look far more sinister. “Dead.”

“No!” Castor’s posture became rigid, jolting him out of his growing reverie.

More corn (corny corn). it's so hard to have a dramatic scene without resorting to cliches, but surely, a talented creative writer liek you could think of somethign better than "No!"
On the other hand, I loved Mawile's "dead." That worked perfectly, because of the way you led up to it.


There was no sign of pursuit on the Mawile's part, her ruby eyes shifting down in what either could be curiosity or amusement. However, Castor knew it was only a matter of time before the Mawile got frustrated and attempted to catch up with him.


The Mawile was using Iron Defense again, her laughter bouncing off the abyss’s walls. Despite the added weight, she appeared to be no closer to Castor then what she had been before. The Mawile appeared to have noticed this, shouting angrily: “Dead, dead, dead!”

The end bit just got a little confusing, because I kept having to remind myself that the pokemon were falling down an abyss- you really need to emphasise that, that everythign is moving really quickly. Shorten sentences, cut down on description- the action is happening really fast here. Although it's a long way to fall, the amount of action you had while they were fallign gave the sense that they were falling down the rabbit-hole from Alexi in Wonderland, and I half expected them to float past cupboards full of teacups and grandfather clocks.

I found much less to comment on about the first chapter- probably because there was less in it than the first, which isn't a bad thing. Nice description, I have an idea about what this Absol clan is like now. I didn't like your title, because ti was misleading- an Overture of a show is an introduction, but it's usually the bit at the start where they play a little bit of every song from the whole show, so it usually goes for ages. Your chapter wasn't long enough to be justified as an overture, I felt- there must be another musical term you could think of for the beginning of something.


recoiling away from each notion of recall like a Togepi from rotting flesh.

Another fantastic example of pokopomorphism.


It was a start; it was something. Something to distinguish himself from the rest.

Who's the himself you're referring to here? You did this kind of thign at the beginning of thel ast chapter, too- who's "he?"


“Go back to sleep, Castor,” Pollux continued, staring out the exit of their tiny den once more. “The moon hasn’t even risen yet.”

First you mention that it's still the middle of the night, unless I've missed something. s soon as you said castor woke up, I imagined him waking in the morning, so you need to speficy that it's night too- also, specify that they're in a cave/den thing- someow, I had the impression that they were on top of these rock things, maybe because of the way you described their home being "on top of a mountain". I don't know- this is just more emphasis stuff. Make sure the reader is imagining the same thing you're imagining- make all the right bits clear.


“Castor.”

“Yes?”

“You said you couldn't remember?”

“I did.”

“Do you want to remember?”

This last bit was gorgeous, except I wasn't sure at first what the "I did" was referring to. is it.."I did remember" or "I did say I couldn't remember."? I hate things like that...

Right, that's everything. Biggest review I've done in my life. It's a great story, just be wary, as all POV writers should, to always remember that your pokemon is a pokemon and not a human, and should think like a pokemon and not a human. I like your writing style, I liek where this is going, PM me when you write more- I hope my comments were helpful, I'm sorry I couldn't find that other spelling mistake.

Thanks again for my banner.

~Phanpy~
29th December 2005, 11:26 AM
Wow... no words can describe this but beautiful! Very, very well paced, and you make the characters seem almost life-like, human like even! your description is superb, you do not overly describe, but give enough to create a very clear picture in the mind. the only mistakes i have found have been pointed out, so keep it coming!

~Phanpy~ ;231;

Saffire Persian
31st December 2005, 12:50 AM
Phanpy: Thanks

Cyndaquil_Dratini: (The people in my banner shop leeched the bandwidth for the banners [you're okay though] and it should be back up Jan. 1st. X.x So, unless you'd like to host it somewhere else, it won't be appearing until then... sorry... X.x stupid leechers..

Anyway, thanks for your review. 0_o.. thanks for the really thorough review, too. I do agree that I do tend to overdescribe - though that's because when I started Requiem I knew I sucked horribly at description, so I purposely tried to use description as much as I could.. as the only way to get better at it was to write description.. XD So that's partly why.

As as for the humanism concept for Pokémon, you'd be surprised how "human" some people go - it's all in the eyes of the writer. Granted, there are things they can't do, but if you ever read Communication by Sike Saner (read it, and you shan't be disappointed) Her Pokémon characters are extremely human - intelligent, etc. and its all very well done. Some people don't like to see Pokemon humanized, but some people do, and to great effect. XD It just depends on the writer.

As always, thanks again.

Typhlogirl
11th January 2006, 3:28 AM
Hi Saffire!

I'M sOrrY I'm sO LatE. Now, to the chapter.

OMFG, Castor and Pollux. And the music titles. I must give you bundles of cookies just for this. Because in my orchaestra at school, we played a music piece called 'Castor et Pollux'. Fondly known as Castor Oil to us XDDDD. It was a weird sounding piece. What a small world, eh?

Anyway, to the fic! I honestly really liked this chapter length. I enjoy short chapters. Well, not too short, but not HUGE. So yeah, this length is good.

Now, teh characters. Pollux is very weird. Which is a good thing. I quite like his personality. Especially the reference to the jade eyes, though you had me going 'WTF?' when you kept calling him 'red-skinned'...I was still confused until I saw someone had posted and called him shiny. Maybe you should add that somewhere? (Or maybe I'm just stupid. Meh! XD)

Another thing that I would have liked to see would have been a description of the den they were sleeping in...it kind of left a big hole in the chapter without it. I presume it was some sort of cave?

I particularly liked the reference to the Absol way of independence, it's very fitting for a pokemon like that. I have a fondness for Absol's, and their way of life. This quote especially:


Learn to walk on your own four paws, they said. When you have the ability to walk, use it. To have others carry you is to be lame.

Yummy.

All in all, a very nice first chapter. I found no mistakes, and the description was lovely. Kudos to you! ^_^

-;157;

P.S. Don't forget to PM me when the next is out. Again, soz for the lateness!

Saffire Persian
14th January 2006, 2:35 AM
Lateness doesn't matter to me.. xD Hopefully it doesn't to you either, I'm making my way through the whole story of yours before I review, 'else I'll never get it finished.

Castor et Pollux? XD.. From an oprah, I believe.. I have to find that song! *goes to find*

And about the shiny thing - I thought about stating it right away, but from the Absol's point of view, it would be 'red-skinned' not shiny.. XD Shiny is such an un-absolish word. But I could have made it more obvious. As for the den - I didn't describe it much, because there wasn't that much to describe.. as it's.. tiny.. small - a den, as I said.. just a small round crevice in the rock that leads to the outside of the mountain where they live.. the den doesn't connect to anything else, and to get to the main part of the Absol cave, you have to walk to get to.. but I probably could've done more.

^^ Thanks for your review.

Ryano Ra
15th January 2006, 5:07 PM
*gibbers ancient tongues of the Sky Knights*

Saffire, I am very impressed. I have only read half of the Prologue, but I couldn't help and comment. (I'll be reading the rest of it and chapter one this afternoon, I have a busy reading/writing schedule). But, that Absol of yours is an outstanding character - he's classy and malicious and dark, in my eyes, which is such an extraordinary combination. I only read up to the part where he encounters the Mawile, so I'm assuming that there will be a battle. And I absolutely love Absol battles, especially when they battle Pokemon that need more attention (Mawile is a great Pokemon, I'm putting a crazed clan in Rhapsody at the end. XD)

Your descriptions just BLEW ME AWAY in a deserted badland. ;_; *wanders around* I love that word you used - maelstrom - for I'd love to know what that word means. It sounds perfect to use, especially in a tempest of some sort. Well, great job, and I'll be posting another review for the second half of the Prologue and chapter one combined. ^^

EDIT - Oh, almost forgot about one thing to comment on - the new RoaD banner. I must say that that banner is beautiful, especially since it has two of my favorite Pokemon in it - Absol and Mawile. The background's amazing, and I just love it. *_*

Saffire Persian
16th January 2006, 1:30 AM
Thanks for the compliments, Syra.. I hope the battle scene does it some justice.. but action scenes, as I have mentioned before, are the most difficult scenes for me to write. ^^

Anyway, I believe I can provide the definition of maelstrom for you. ^^ To quote the online dictionary, it's:

1. A violent or turbulent situation
2. A whirlpool of extraordinary size or violence.

^^ So.. it's a sort of synonym to tempest, in some cases. o.o And Castor as malicious? 0_o.. That's an interesting observation. The Mawile is more malicious than Castor will ever be though.

As always, thanks for the review.

StrayedBullet
30th January 2006, 11:07 AM
Saffire Persian,

I, like Cyndaquil Dratini, decided to look at your fic after you made my supertriffic banner. All I can say is my jaw was open, drooling for the whole time.

Your description was great, the image you painted and imprinted in my mind was superb.
you have made the cave of origin much darker and mysterious than in the games, and I loved the Mawille. She was so grossly innocent and vile at the same time, it was hard to actually put my finger on what I felt about her XD

It was interesting to see you name the twin Absol after the Gemini twins, and I am guessing that it will have something to do with the plot. I can't wait for the next chapter to come up.

-SB ;001;

Saffire Persian
5th February 2006, 5:30 PM
Stray Bullet: Thanks for your review, glad you liked the Mawile. ^^

Well, it's been, what? Two months since the last update? Horrible, I know. This chapter was originally part of Overture, but due to the edits and additions it's now a chapter in itself. This one does have, again, a slower pacing, though the pace speeds up considerably in the next few chapters. As always, comments, advice, criticism is greatly welcomed, and don't hesitate to point out any typos so I can kill them.



Chapter 2: Etude

A short musical composition meant to investigate a particular problem of technique.

Castor walked through the deserted pathways of the cave, his footfalls hardly making a sound over the smooth rock. Its jagged edges had long been worn away from centuries of continuous use. He had exited his den a few hours after Pollux had left, trying to push what remained of the dream to the back of his mind. There wasn't much to think on, as as he only had a few bits and pieces to reflect upon.

The halls in which he walked were completely empty, and his only companion was the silence followed him through the passages of what Castor called home. He was used to the silence, just as he was used to the solitude, and it was no surprise to him that he had seen only three other Absol cross his path. Each time they had given him no more than a quick glance before continuing on their way.

Castor had long since given up trying to strike up a conversation with any of the older Absol. It seemed to be an unspoken rule that you did not speak to those older than you, unless there was some important reason for you doing so, or they talked to you first.

Like that happens much.

In fact, now that Castor thought about it, he hadn’t really seen anything that would qualify as a real conversation going on between other Absol. Talking for the sake of talking seemed pointless, and those who didn’t believe so got used to it. Of course, Castor was young and inexperienced and hadn’t seen much in comparison to the majority of his kind residing in the mountains. And it wasn’t like there were any Absol his age he could talk to – Pollux excluded, and it wasn’t like he enjoyed random conversations -- with the closest he knew off being three years apart. Absol were keen on silence and solitude, preferring to keep to themselves amongst the almost deserted caverns, so adolescent Absol such as himself were a rarity.

So rare, even their occasional appearance seemed to be overlooked.

Unless, of course, there was something so completely strange that everyone had to take notice of. Pollux had been one of those few exceptions for a time. His twin’s dusty red paws and face. as well as his green eyes, were enough to warrant a second glance and sometimes a request for a name, until the Absol clan became acclimated to Pollux’s odd appearance. The added interest the other Absol displayed towards him back then was merely out of etiquette, Castor knew – and that was only because he had insisted on tagging along on Pollux’s ventures like a shadow. It was hard to find one without the other, even though there didn’t seem to be much substance to the relationship other than a blood bond.

If Pollux himself detested or appreciated his constant company, he didn’t show it.

Castor finally arrived at his destination in front of a natural archway that led into a large, open space that was free of the plentiful rocky dividers that made the mountain cave into something of a labyrinth. Barely disturbing the quiet, Castor Faint Attacked up to where a hole existed in the stone partition.

Pollux was already there, like Castor had expected, his jade eyes were intently scouring the ground below. The small overlook gave a clear view of the round area on the other side of the divider. The area Pollux was looking down upon happened to be a favorite sparing area amongst the more active Absol, and garnered much more traffic than most parts of the cave.

As to why Pollux had chosen the overlook as his place of solace, Castor wasn’t quite sure; but whenever Castor couldn’t find his twin, this place was his first stop, as Pollux always surfaced here sooner or later to survey the comings and goings with dutiful regularity.

“Castor.” Pollux nodded his head once in acknowledgement, doing nothing more.

Castor took his usual spot besides Pollux before responding. “I thought I’d find you here."

“I always am here.”

“Yes…” Turning his gaze to the ground below, Castor spotted two familiar Absol that went by the names of Saif and Na’ir. They were currently sparring, gliding across flat terrain with graceful, elegant movements. Even the ensuing battle didn’t seem to be breaking the stillness much.

“Watch.”

Castor cocked his head, giving his brother a rather odd glance at the command, but did as he was bid.

Na’ir was in mid-leap when Castor finally began to really focus the sparing match below. Saif himself was attacking from below, the horn that jutted from the side of his head beginning to glow white as Na’ir descended. Wind shrieked through the caverns as Saif finally unleashed the gathered energy with a quick toss of his head.

The scythe-shaped projectile, along with the accompanying wind, pushed Na’ir back as he was forced to evade the attack, lest he lose (for once the first real blow was struck, you lost) landing neatly on the ground on Saif’s left side. Barely a second was lost before Na’ir took off again, making his way around to his opponent’s right side. Saif went rigid, his head turning quickly to the left, finding nothing. Panic leaked out of Saif’s cracking composure, as he tried to locate his foe, not knowing Na’ir was just to the other side of him.

Na’ir Farfaint was taking advantage of Saif’s apparent confusion, bolting at great speed across the floor.

Saif only noticed the approaching body seconds before the Quick Attack would have hit, managing to evade the normal-type attack by a hair’s width. Na’ir was left stumbling, scrambling to maintain balance as he tried to turn around.

“He’s going to try to use Quick Attack again, to try and keep his momentum and make up for the moments he lost when Saif dodged…”

The dark-type followed Pollux’s prediction almost exactly, seeming to fly across the rock, only to fail again as Saif evaded the move -- by a much wider margin than the last time. Instead of taking a defensive position, Saif moved into the offensive, giving Na’ir only a few seconds to respond and block the incoming attack.

“Watch,” Pollux said firmly, as Castor’s gaze began to wander towards the ceiling of the cave.

They were head-butting now, their horns locking together briefly with each new movement as both attempted to gain ground. They were evenly matched, and both were refusing to shift.

Na’ir Farfaint abruptly stopped, taking a few quick steps back, before using his powerful hind legs to leap into the air. If Saif was surprised by the sudden move, he didn’t show it, crouching down as if he himself was preparing to jump.

“It’s finished.”

The fight ended quickly after Pollux’s statement. Na’ir missed his pounce, giving Saif the opening he needed to retaliate, burying his own scythe-horn into Na’ir’s shoulder. The harsh bark that threatened to burst out of Na’ir’s throat faded into a low growl, nodding his head only once in acceptance of his loss. The tension in the air was broken, and the two Absol separated. There was no bitterness between them, just a cold, unrelenting acceptance.

“You do realize that Na’ir could have triumphed over Saif had he just tried to watch, and had not been so concerned with attacking.”

It took a moment for Castor to realize that Pollux was talking to him, his eyes riveted on the departing Absol.

“Um... what?”

“Did you watch?”

“Yes,” Castor said slowly, not liking the frustrated stare his brother was now giving him with no attempt whatsoever to conceal it. Still, to Pollux’s credit, his steady voice never once showed a hint of that frustration, though it left as quickly as it came. Of course, that only annoyed Castor all the more, and it wasn’t the first time. More often than not, Castor would have preferred his twin outright yelling at him, rather than keeping the same, steady voice and composure that was so much like their father’s.

“Did you not see Saif’s slow reaction when the other Absol went around to his right side from the left?”

Castor shrugged. “I, well –“ There was that stare again. Couldn’t he just cut it out? “—I did. So he hesitated for a few moments. It happens often enough, doesn’t it?”

“You’d think you would at least try to pay more attention to an Absol you lost to,” Pollux said, giving Castor a rather pointed look. “It was Saif whom you lost to, wasn’t it?”

Castor grimaced. “It was.”

Pollux nodded once in response. “And you lost to him because of your inability…”

Castor really didn’t want or need to be reminded. It irritated him enough as it was, even if he had changed a lot since that time several years ago. The memories of the event was far too easy to summon to the surface; the slightest mention of it was enough to make him relive the moments and wonder exactly how he had managed to make a fool of himself, and ruin whatever chance of recognition he had for quite some time.

It had been a night like this one. He and had Pollux had even been situated in their little overlook, watching a battle between Saif and another unknown member of their species. Saif had quickly proven himself to be the victor of the battle, scoring the first blow soon after the battle had started with apparent ease.

The other Absol had lost much too quickly and Saif’s victory had been far too easy for Castor's liking.

Anyone, Castor was quite sure, could claim victory from the rather thin looking Absol Saif had defeated. Saif was nothing special in Castor’s eyes.

Perhaps it was sheer overconfidence that made him rise to his paws and follow through his idea that day, or perhaps it was something else, but for whatever the reason, Castor had stood up with a firm determination to spar with Saif himself.

Pollux had guessed his brother’s intentions, stepping in front of him to catch his attention before he could Faint Attack below. “You’ll lose. Do you want that?” It had been a warning just as much as it had been a statement.

But at the time, Castor hadn’t really bothered to listen. Already, dreams of victory were rushing through his head, and he snorted dismissively at his brother’s comment. “I won’t lose.”

Pollux may not have responded, but even Castor could catch the aura of disbelief he was giving off, and Castor didn’t like it. “What? You think I can’t do it? Well, I can.”

“You can’t,” Pollux said simply, taking his brother’s glare without so much as flinching or turning away.

“But …“ Castor’s voice wavered, shaking his head to try and dispel the doubt that threatened to make its way to the surface, all thanks to his brother’s countenance, which had yet to show emotion. His brother’s approval still meant a lot to him, and Pollux’s disbelief unsettled him, as well as making him more determined to prove him wrong. “I’m going to try.”

Pollux only shrugged and settled himself back into his original position with his paws dangling over the edge of the rock. “Do as you will.”

Still, Castor pursued the conversation – he wasn’t sure quite why. “You can’t stop me from going!”

“I wasn’t about to.” Pollux shifted, his blank expression turning into a frown. “And I am not going to. But if you are serious –“

“Of course I am –“

“Then you had better hurry, Saif’s leaving.”

In a flash of black smoke, Castor had gone.

The battle itself had occurred faster than Castor had ever imagined it being. Castor had challenged Saif with as much elegance and seriousness as he could muster, doing all he could to weave a sense of bravado around himself while trying to remember (and do) all the customs that sparring dictated. Saif had accepted with a careless sort of acknowledgement, and as ritual dictated, he and Saif both went to opposite ends of the sparring arena and bowed to one another.

Then, the battle begun.

Castor had started first, leaping into action with one of the few attacks he knew: Quick Attack. He was speeding forward, the feeling of euphoria (the idea that he was actually doing something for once) flowing through his veins for a few precious moments before they were completely dashed against the rocky ground he ran on.

The last thing Castor remembered of the battle afterwards was a brilliant white light accompanied by a hard blow to his right temple that sent him skidding across the rocky floor. Castor could feel immediately feel unconsciousness setting in, black dots erupting in plenty across his vision. All Castor could think about was how foolish he must look.

Fool.

The next thing Castor recalled was waking up with a pounding headache, still sprawled across the floor like a clump of shed fur. His mind was swimming, and the pain radiating from the side of his head and around his body from where he had slammed into the ground was more than enough to make Castor want very much to sink into the black oblivion once more.

That, of course, was reinforced by the sudden feeling of embarrassment that now surfaced, unfettered as the memories of what had taken place before came back with alarming clarity. Castor struggled to rise to his feet as he noticed someone was watching him. That alone was enough to jolt him into full awareness, making his posture go completely rigid. He quickly relaxed, however, as he realized was only Pollux. No one else was around.

Castor had instinctively known what Pollux was going to say before he voiced it. “You were a fool to challenge him.”

“I lost, I know. You don’t have to rub it in,” Castor said indignantly, wincing at the pain in his head. “What happened?”

“You were knocked out.”

“I guessed that much.” Castor grimaced as he tumbled over his paws and back onto the floor into a white heap, scowling. That’s it. He wasn’t going to even bother trying to get back up. Standing up fast was making his vision swim anyways.

“I mean,” Castor began again, “did Saif say anything?”

“Nothing in particular.”

“I’m in no mood for your games. What did he say?”

“It’s of no consequence.”

“What did he say?” Castor repeated, enunciating his demand with a low growl.

“He said,” Pollux began, hesitating at first, before deciding it was better to just get it over with, “that you should stop pretending to be what you are not.” Pollux crouched down to Castor’s level, mimicking his brother’s position (though it wasn’t quite so awkward). “There, does that satisfy you?”

Castor’s gaze was positively glowering as he spoke up. “Immensely. I suppose you agree with what he said, then?”

Pollux shrugged. “There is truth to what he says. Skill such as what Saif possesses does not come through pure emotion and will, it comes through experience, which you do not have. You didn’t even try to fight.”

“I did, too,” Castor growled, feeling the fur on his neck begin to bristle up in anger. “I wanted to win. I wanted to do something instead of just… watching.”

Pollux decided to fix Castor with one of his more penetrating stares. “What you want is of no consequence if you do not possess the skill to fight for it in the first place.”

Castor grit his teeth, loathing the way Pollux was carefully pronouncing each word, like one would to a newborn child. “I don’t suppose you could have done any better?”

Pollux didn’t miss a beat in replying. “I could have.”

“Oh that’s right,” Castor spat angrily. “You do everything right. You’re perfect; you don’t look foolish or make mistakes. Ever.”

“I’ve made mistakes, Castor, many times,” Pollux replied, his jade eyes shining with sudden, cunning light, “I just don’t let anyone see me.”


The memory faded, and Castor snapped back to attention, looking left to right rapidly to see if he had missed anything important. Pollux had apparently noticed his lapse, again watching the ground below. His twin’s jade eyes flitted upwards to meet his, before flitting back to where they had been trained on beforehand. “Look at him now. See how Saif moved to Na’ir’s right side.”

“I still don’t see what you’re trying to tell me.”

“Don’t you see?” Pollux hissed. “Every movement he makes is always on his right. His right side is always facing the opponent. If not, he makes mistakes, he panics, shifts.”

“What about it?” Castor said. “Not anything special about that, really.”

Pollux paused, breathing deeply. “Saif’s blind, Castor, in his left eye. He always makes sure those close to him are on his right side, because he can’t see with the opposite eye.”

“Blind?” Castor did a double take, watching Saif’s retreating figure with a new degree of interest. He couldn’t be blind – could he? Nobody could fight that well and still be blind… right? “He can’t be. Someone would have noticed –“ He stopped himself, glaring darkly in Pollux’s direction. “—someone older, would have noticed and said something about it.”

“The older Absol don’t know everything, because they don’t bother with much anymore, I thought I told you that.”

“Still, you think they would have noticed.”

“They don’t bother to take the time to notice him. He hides his blindness well under normal circumstances, in any case. I doubt even Na’ir realizes that Saif is blind, it took me quite some time to come to that conclusion myself. He’s strong, and he trains here often. He doesn’t want to be weak, so he works at hiding his disability from others.”

“If he’s so good, why bother hiding it anymore?”

“A weakness is a weakness nonetheless. You’d be surprised what other creatures have to hide. Father, Mother – everyone and everything has something to hide. If you want to discover them, you have to be patient and watch.

“Listen, Castor,” Pollux said slowly, making Castor look up at him in surprise. Pollux never talked to a great extent unless he had something important to say or point out. His twin was obviously trying to choose his words carefully, “not everything is made plain for you to see. You can’t just run along and expect to know everything from the beginning. Sometimes you can’t be part of the ‘who’ and watch everything fly past you; sometimes you have to watch and figure out the ‘how’ and ‘why’. Think on it.”

With that, Pollux disappeared in a cloud of black smoke, leaving Castor to attempt to decipher his brother’s words, or ignore them entirely.

Xiang
5th February 2006, 7:39 PM
He had existed his den a few hours after Pollux had left,

Unless I'm wrong, shouldn't it be "he had existed in his den"?


Castor took his usual spot besides Pollux before responding. “I thought I’d find you here.

Missing a quotation mark. :D


Castor finally began to really focus the sparing match below.

Maybe sparring?


They were head butting now,

Headbutting-one word?


His mind was swimming, and the pain radiating from the side of his head and around his body from where he had slammed into the ground was more than enough to make Castor want very much to sink into the black oblivion once more.

Nice. :)


Walk on your own four paws, but don not trip while doing so.

Do not?

Nice. Can't really see that much of the plot yet, but there were many moments of great wording. I could visualize a lot of this. ;)

Curious: What does Etude mean?

Going to edit the review later.

~Ratiasu

Sike Saner
5th February 2006, 7:50 PM
He had existed his den a few hours after Pollux had left, trying to push what remained of the dream to the back of his mind.

Pretty sure that was meant to be "exited". *pushes button and opens trapdoor under the letter "s"*


Boss work on the Saif vs. Na'ir battle there. ^^ I always enjoy the matches between members of the same species, for once the types are taken out of the picture, the fight really does become all about skill. I liked also the dialogue bewtween Castor and Pollux; it's very authentically...brotherish (I know there has got to be a better word for that, but you know what I mean. XD )And Pollux seemed to shine a little more as a character; I feel like we're really starting to get an idea of who he is. Also, I'm getting interested in Saif (not THAT kind of interested, now, don'r get any impure ideas... XP ) I wouldn't mind seeing more of him. ^^


And I know this was already quoted, but I've just got to cite it, because it was really just...yum:


His mind was swimming, and the pain radiating from the side of his head and around his body from where he had slammed into the ground was more than enough to make Castor want very much to sink into the black oblivion once more.

SnoringFrog
6th February 2006, 1:21 AM
Nice chapter, I like how this is going so far, Pollux seems like a very interesting character.


“ I just don’t let anyone see me.”


That's the only error I caught, you put a space in between your quotes and 'I'.

Air Dragon
6th February 2006, 12:39 PM
Highlights:


More often than not, Castor would have preferred his twin outright yelling at him, rather than keeping the same, steady voice and composure that was so much like their father’s.

LOL...if had a twin, so would i.


Pollux had guessed his brother’s intentions, stepping in front of him to catch his attention before he could Faint Attack below. “You’ll lose. Do you want that?” It had been a warning just as much as it had been a statement.

But at the time, Castor hadn’t really bothered to listen. Already, dreams of victory were rushing through his head, and he snorted dismissively at his brother’s comment. “I won’t lose.”

Pollux may not have responded, but even Castor could catch the aura of disbelief he was giving off, and Castor didn’t like it. “What? You think I can’t do it? Well, I can.”

“You can’t,” Pollux said simply, taking his brother’s glare without so much as flinching or turning away.

“But …“ Castor’s voice wavered, shaking his head to try and dispel the doubt that threatened to make its way to the surface, all thanks to his brother’s countenance, which had yet to show emotion. His brother’s approval still meant a lot to him, and Pollux’s disbelief unsettled him, as well as made him more determined to prove him wrong. “I’m going to try.”

Pollux only shrugged and settled himself back into his original position with his paws dangling over the edge of the rock. “Do as you will.”

Wotta ray of sunshine that Pollux is...LOL. I bet Castor so felt the love there.XD


“I’ve made mistakes, Castor, many times,” Pollux replied, his jade eyes shining with sudden, cunning light, “ I just don’t let anyone see me.”


~Walk on your own four paws, but do not trip while doing so~

Love Pollex's attitude there!^_^

Grammar and Spell:


as he only had a few bits and flashes that said little.

normally, the phrase is bits and pieces. the line could go like this:


as he only had a few bits and pieces to reflect upon; flashes that said little.


You do realize that Na’ir could have won Saif had he just tried to watch, and had not been so concerned with attacking

try changing the won to triumphed over. Sounds more err Polluxy and makes more sense grammatically.


Anyon,

Anyone.

Overall, not losing a dop of your colourful writing skill, SP, you've done it again! Great chapter! i like Saif a lot...being able to fight even when half blind! that's i guy i could emulate (though i'm not blind in my left eye!) Hopefully i won't spend so long updating either...XD. May not matter anyway.
Later!

Overwhelming_Latias
6th February 2006, 6:59 PM
Y'know, if this was a proper novel, you'd have some damn fine acclaim on the back... stuff like 'Breathtaking narrative' and 'an immersive plot that captivates the reader' spring to mind. Anyway for the review...

Good Points
-Absol. Of all the protaganists you could've chose, you picked one of THE darkest, most ominous Pokemon ever, that still maintains a air of coolness about it. Seriously, Castor is an excellent character with strength, resolve and honour; while seemingly accepting humbleness and humility. A great main character, and the varied other Absol in the second chapter were well-developed too.
-Mawile. A rarely seen Pokemon in the fan fic arena, it was great to see her brought to life so well. You captured both the innocence that the childlike part of her eminates, as well as the brutality and destruction that those huge jaws can really cause. Excellent.
-The sparring match was well coreographed and kept the pace of the chapter well.
-Excellent punctuation and grammar, and very few spelling errors that can easily be corrected.
-Description is awesome. The reader really gets a good sense of the Cave of Origin, the Pokemon involved etc etc. Brillant work.
-The narrative... your words run so fluidly together, everything is so well-structured, easy-to-read and interesting, that you're going to establish a good strong fanbase easily and keep us coming back for more.

Bad Points
-I would put some if I could find any... but that's a GOOD thing, right? :D

Well there you have it. Thats my two pennies on your fic. Again, a bloody awesome fic, keep it up and try to get that next chapter out soon... I can't stand the wait! :D

-OL

Rani Fernleaf
7th February 2006, 2:51 AM
“You do realize that Na’ir could have won Saif had he just tried to watch, and had not been so concerned with attacking.”

Could have won? It seems slightly odd.


“I’ve made mistakes, Castor, many times,” Pollux replied, his jade eyes shining with sudden, cunning light, “ I just don’t let anyone see me.”


Pwnage. Majorly. Pollux is turning out to be the sadistic twin brother; is it only me, or are Pollux and Castor reminescent of the Dragonlance Chronicles' Raistlin and Caramon?


“A weakness is a weakness nonetheless. You’d be surprised what other creatures have to hide. Father, Mother – everyone and everything has something to hide. If you want to discover them, you have to be patient and watch.

Missing a quotation mark at the end, but lovely all the same. I wonder how that ties into the chapters to come?

I like the way you used musical notations - is that right? - for the chapter names. But I suspect that the 'Requiem' part of the title also means something else?

CHeSHiRe-CaT
7th February 2006, 12:40 PM
I've only read up to the Overture thus far (it's around four in the morning @.@), and of course, I'm just utterly flabbergasted at your writing, Saffire Persian. The way you describe pain is so exhilarating, and I can picture everything as you try to display it through your writing. I didn't know the Siamese twins were named Castor and Pollux O.o;; Interesting wittle tidbit, and yus, very clever ^_^ Absols are definitely on my favorite list of Pokémon now... Pollux gives me the impression that he is a bit solemn...maybe a bit more understanding of the Absol way. The fact that's he's shiny also makes him awesome x3

I promise I weel catch up to Etude, but not now, or I'll pass out X.x Take care!

"The World is Quiet Here"
~Kitty

EDIT: I forgot to mention that I loved the part at the end whar Castor asked himself if he wanted to remember XD Brillig. "Many don't see the path; some don't recognize it when they do...some...don't ever want to." *Cheshire-cat grin*

katiekitten
7th February 2006, 1:31 PM
Arrgh... I was half way through reading it last nght and had a nice review but then my computer froze and refused to turn back on. *kicks it*

ANYWAY, that was wonderful, Sapphire! I really enjoyed it, especialy the description around the battle between Saif and Na'ir. I could see it all, and it was really nice. I getting to know the characters more, which is good, and I am liking this story very much.

Keep up the good work! :)

Ash_Junior
7th February 2006, 9:19 PM
sparing area

sparring area, I think you mean.

I really like Pollux--the whole "think a lot, and THEN act" isn't seen a lot. maybe I've missed it, but I REALLY like Pollux.

I'm still wondering what the main antagonism is gonna be....

but I'm sure that it'll be great.

btw, the new Retribution is up. Link is in your banner in my sig.

:D

thanks again for the banner.

Hidden Mew
8th February 2006, 12:03 AM
That was a great chapter. I loved all of the wonderful details. I could really picture all of those Absol in my mind. The fact that they have fights with each other feels really original. After this chapter, I really like Pollux more than before. It feels like he is the wiser twin. I also feel like his appearance as a shiny pokemon may give him more insight on things than the other Absol. It also made me think that many of them stay away from him because of his appearance. Anyway, this was a wonderful chapter and I look foreword to reading the next one.

Saffire Persian
9th February 2006, 5:41 AM
*Goes to kill typos*

Thanks for your reviews! ^^...

Ratiasu: The meaning of Etude is just below the chapters name (in italics). But the meaning is, again (or rather, what it is) is: A short musical composition meant to investigate a particular problem of technique

Sike: 0_o.. Wow.. you like Saif.. ^^ And no, I'm not getting any ideas. >.>..... and as for whether or not we'll see more of him? Well, at this point, he's still quite minor, but he does make an appearance again.

Shiny Mightyena: I shall get your banners done, soon. ^_^ In any case, thanks for the suggestions - I took them and edited them in.. ^_^ Thanks a lot.

SnoringFrog; Thank you! I'll send my opinions of the segment you sent me soon. (Quite busy At the moment)

Overwheaming Latias: Thanks for stopping by! I appreciate it. I'd have your banner done, but life's been busy.. X.x

Rani: Hmm.. I've never read the Dragonlance books. ^_^ And yes, all the chapters are Musical terms - and the title means something too..

I'll edit my other responses in.. but I have to go

BenJS
9th February 2006, 11:19 AM
Excellent Saffire, I can feel something building and I can't wait for the story to really get going.

I like the way Pollux was able to analyze the battle, and had come to the conclusion of blindness. Usually people say their character is observant but don't really back it up, unlike you. I like the little society the absol have too, the idea around the sparring and its rules is good.

I also noticed some typos, but since I read it yesterday (I had to go to bed, school ya know) I can't remember where they were.

Calcos the Destroyer
10th February 2006, 12:12 AM
Yay, I'm back! And I'm certainly not dissapointed! Though the whole thing seems to have taken place before the prelude...

Nirarekdan
10th February 2006, 3:17 AM
Sorry I'm late! I'll edit this post later- don't have time to read the chappie or write. Be right back!

Saffire Persian
11th February 2006, 2:28 AM
Cheshire Cat: Thanks. ^^ I'm glad you liked Overture.

Katiekitten: Thanks for reviewing! o.o *wonders why everyone likes Saif*

Ash_Junior: The Main antagonist? Well, you'll be surprised, though the real antagonist is very different then what might be previously thought... you'll see why.

Hidden Mew Yes, Pollux is the wiser twin - through and through. He and Castor are extremely different, despite being twins and growing up in the same environment. I've tried my best to reveal some of Castor's motivation for what he wants to do at this point.. And I will tell you right now, that his being 'shiny' has nothing to do with his intelligence. :3.. he wasn't going to be shiny until I read something about the star he's named after.. Pollux - part of the Gemini constellation (The twin is of course, Castor). The star Pollux is described as the 'red' star... So.. that was my entire motivation for him being shiny.. nothing more. ^^

BenJS: TYpos.. yes, there are some assuredly. I'll kill them as soon as I find them. ^^ Thanks for the review!

Calcos: Yes, this takes place /before/ the preview. It always was meant to be that way, but to make the beginning a bit more clearer, I added a slightly new intro to the Chapter of Overture, though it's your choice whether you read it or not - it won't change you're reading of the story..much.. and it will in no way affect the ending.

Nikarekden: (Sorry if I spelt your name wrong) ^^ It's okay, you don't have to review right away.. I know it takes time.

cyndaquil_dratini
11th February 2006, 2:32 AM
Hey, nice chapter. Very exciting, really nice description. I won't do such a detailed review today, um, because, um...I don't feel like it. I found heaps of typos, shame on you, but I've got heaps of typos in my story too- it just makes it look all unprofessional, so don't be lazy and go through and fix them. I think your battle sequences were brilliant, especially Saif and Na'thingy. You did a fantastic job at building tension and keeping the action going right through.

Pollux's character is obviously very specific. I hate him, Pollux the pillock, I wish he'd get off his high horse and say something useful once in a while. That's not the the way everyone is taking Pollux, but people who act like they're so smart they're better than everyone else automatically piss me off, so be careful not to overdo that part of his character, if you want your audience to like him. I related to Castor a lot more, however, because of his arrogant, self-conceited twin and the way he acted in the flashback bit. I say someone smack Pollux in the face, he needs someone to put him in his place. That line about "I make mistakes, but I don't let people see them'- ohhh, I read that and I felt like swearing! People get good by making mistakes, and stay bad by worrying too much about making mistakes, and embarrassing themselves! Gosh, people! It's just embarrassment, it's not pain. Some people.... or pokemon, in this context. Pollux is obviously not as wise as he makes out to be; or maybe, and I suspect this is the case, this is simply the Absol way.
Fingers crossed castor breaks the mould.

I loved your plot development with Saif and the recount ofthe battle, the story is progressing nicely. I'd like to be able to have some kind of idea where it's headedat this stage though, this'll be what I'll be expecting out of chapter three.

I have absolutely no problem at all about how long you take to write a chapter, but if I have to wait a month and then its full of errors, I wonder what you've been up to. Unfortunetaly, people have lives, so I forgive you. I'm not gonna tell you the typos I found, coz unless you go through the whoel story looking for them (don't scan, actually read the whole thing) there'll still be more I missed.

Your description has become much less overdone, much more subtle, more more professional, and this is a very impressive chapter. I look forward to chapter three.

Nirarekdan
14th February 2006, 3:08 AM
Okay, I've finished reading the chapter and I'm ready to write- 9/10. A few spelling errors, but nothing major. A very intriguing chappie overall, and I like it. The characters are very interesting, and different from what I'd expected in personality. Pollux seems almost philosophical, and Castor.... well, I'll wait until the next chapter before trying to figure him out too much. ^^; but a very, very good chapter.

blackemerald
14th February 2006, 6:24 PM
Typo killer to the rescue!


that free of the plentiful rocky dividers that made the mountain cave into something of a labyrinth.

Try was in between that and free.


to where a hole existed in the in the stone partition.

Take out the extra 'in' and 'the'


Na’ir was left stumbling as he scrambled to maintain the balance as he tried to turn around.

Having two of these sort of disrupts the flow, you could try replacing the first set with a comma.


giving Na’ir only a few seconds to respond and block the incoming attack.


“I, well –“


“But …“

You have one of your speech marks the wrong way.


wonder exactly how he had managed to make a fool of himself


It had been a night like this one.


Anyone, Castor was quite sure


that made him to rise to his paws and follow through his idea that day

No need for the extra to.


as well as made him more determined to prove him wrong.

Shouldn't it be 'making him'?


flowing through his veins for a few a precious moments

No need for that A.


Castor struggled to rise to his fee

To his feet.

Right. Apart from all the mistakes, a lovely chapter. I find Pollox quite intriguing with al his wisdom. He seems like those wise sages you always seem to find on the top of mountains XD. He also has a mysterious feel about him.

The battle scene between Saif and Na'ir was beautifully described. You could feel as if you were in their position and the fact that they were of the same type only added to the skill required.

And now, I leave you with my favourite quote:


“I’ve made mistakes, Castor, many times,” Pollux replied, his jade eyes shining with sudden, cunning light, “I just don’t let anyone see me.”

~B.E

Saffire Persian
16th February 2006, 11:42 PM
cyndaquil_dratini: As this chapter was originally part of chapter one, there wasn't a lot of plot material. Next chapter will clear that up.


Pollux's character is obviously very specific. I hate him, Pollux the pillock, I wish he'd get off his high horse and say something useful once in a while. That's not the the way everyone is taking Pollux, but people who act like they're so smart they're better than everyone else automatically piss me off, so be careful not to overdo that part of his character, if you want your audience to like him. I related to Castor a lot more, however, because of his arrogant, self-conceited twin and the way he acted in the flashback bit. Pollux is obviously not as wise as he makes out to be; or maybe, and I suspect this is the case, this is simply the Absol way.
Fingers crossed castor breaks the mould.

I thought some people would say Pollux was conceited, I was waiting for it 0_o.. but oddly no one has except you. Now I get a chance to explain - I will say that he is a bit conceited, but not as much as you're making him out to be. His dialogue says that, and it sounds very much conceited - and that is exactly what Castor made of his brother at the time - an arrogant, conceited jerk. The thing is - most Absol are extremely truthful by nature - harshly and bluntly so. So, Pollux's comments were less of him really being conceited, and more or less just telling Castor exactly what he thinks, and being truthful about it. Pollux probably wouldn't have said all the things he said if Castor did not 'ask'.

And you'll find many of the Absol are like Pollux, just this clan's way of life. The next chapter will go more in depth about that.

Nikarekdan: Thanks for the review! Yes, I seem to have had many spelling/grammar mistakes in this chapter.. X.x I miss them when they're right in front of my face... makes me wanna go hit my head into the brick.

Blackemerald: Thank you for pointing out all those dang spelling mistakes and such - my proofreading eye is horrid... and I hate it. I appreciate you taking the time to point them out so I can go and murder them.

Ryano Ra
19th February 2006, 12:34 AM
FINALLY! I finished reviewing Requiem of a Dream.

Jesus, I love your description. It tears through the heavens, boils the undeworlds, and brings a hint of malevolent that is filled with spices of loveliness and beautifulness. What I love is how you carefully use the choice of words, and what you tend to describe more thoroughly than other factors in the story. I loved the beginning of the prologue with the maelstrom of activity, and the way you brought Castor into the story was brilliant. But again, I must comment on your description - it rocks. Majestic. Elegant. I love it as much as french-vanilla ice cream. It sends chills up my spine, and your details is the ONLY one that does that to me. I have finally found description that is just absolutely wonderful. The best around here in my opinion.

Characters - I love Saif, Na'ir, Castor, and Pollux. Castor is much more complex and complicated, and his way of thinking is just flawless. The Absol clans are interesting, and I love the idea that Pollux is a twin of Castor, and yet, they are the Gemini Twins. I would have never expected a writer to use that, and it was complete unexpected, but nevertheless, a unique factor that adds to the uprising mystery. (Must I write again about how much I love your details?) There were some mistakes, a few in which indeed pierced my heart, but I overrode the feeling and successfully read the two chapters and the Prologue. I would love to see more of Saif, because out of all the Absols thus far, Saif's the most interesting one. Indeed, place him in more chapters.

~ Serpent Syra

Saffire Persian
24th February 2006, 5:11 AM
XD.. For only having one line of dialogue, people sure do like Saif.

Yes, they're named after the Gemini twins - well, more or less the constellation rather than the Greek myth. All the Absol are named after stars.. 0_o... call it an odd endulgence of mine if you will. ^^ I'm glad you liked my description, I tried the best.

And yes, there are probably quite a few mistakes hiding from me underneath all the narrative... Everyone has to have a weak point, I suppose. For me, proof-reading is one of them.. I hope I'll get better at it. Because I do try to catch my errors.. Though sometimes I wonder what I'm doing wrong with missing all of them..

Bugs the heck out of me, too. Thanks for your review! Hopefully I'll have chapter three up soon!

*~Puru-Ryuu~*
7th April 2006, 3:23 AM
OMG this is f***ing awesome Saffire Persian

Saffire Persian
11th April 2006, 5:11 AM
OMG this is f***ing awesome Saffire Persian

Umm.. Thanks. ^_^ I appreciate your review.

Psychic Umbreon
11th April 2006, 5:32 AM
There's only one thing I can say about the beginning: Kill that stupid Mawile!!
Now, onto the chapters: Castor and Pollux? I've heard those names before. Where? Where have I heard them? Shiny? Shiny Absol?! I love shiny Absols. Give me that shiny!!

*hugs Saffire for being such a superb writer and gives a cake* Ahem, I will get around to finishing my review tomorrow.

Saffire Persian
20th April 2006, 4:08 AM
Aww, but I liked the Mawile. XD

Castor and Pollux are the names of two of the stars in the Gemini (Twin) constellation. Which is where I got my names from - Pollux is, believe it or not, a "red" colored star, which is why I made Pollux shiny. ^^ It fits his namesake.

Typhlogirl
21st April 2006, 9:41 AM
Told ya I'd review! ^_^

Now, all I can say is wow. That was one of the best chapters I have read in a pokemon fanfiction. The depth you give to your characters...it amazing. I love it. You have fleshed out the characters of Castor and Pollux fantastically. I can honestly say that you had my eyes on the screen the entire time, which is rare for me. I love Pollux. I especially love his lines. He is so down-to-earth and logical, yet mysterious and strange. I <3 him.

Castor, on the other hand, is just as interesting. You can see he resents his way of life in the Absol clan, and wants to make something of himself. I like the way you make his character address certain factors of Absol life with resentfulness and anger. He is a free spirit, that's obvious. I am thinking a confrontation with Saif (interesting name) is on the cards now that he knows about that particular weakness?

Speaking of a battle, that one between Saif and Na'ir was very well described and documented. I could visualise the fight between the two Absol in my mind perfectly from the way you described it. I have to say, I am in love with Pollux. I just adore his personality and uniqueness as a character. To me, Castor fades into the background compared to him (which I'm sure would not impress Castor XD).

Once again, I can find nothing to critisize (damn you) and eagerly await the next installment to this lovely work of fanfiction. :)

Yours faithfully,

-;157;

P.S. I love the way you use musical terms at the beginning of your chapters...awesome. I could never do that. ^_^ Kudos to you!

Saffire Persian
16th June 2006, 1:32 AM
Time for shameless bump!

Typhlogirl : I'm glad someone likes Pollux - some people seem to think "annoying" right off, which surprised me. ^^ I like him a lot, a bit more than Castor actually. And perhaps Castor and Saif will meet again, maybe not. But that weakness is something to keep in mind.

An update will come... sometime. o.0