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FloatingFlames
6th November 2005, 7:56 PM
After half a year, I'm ready to post a new one-shot. >_>

I'm sure everyone has read fics about abusive trainers, so I just took that idea and added onto it. Tell me what you think.

Also...

This is rated R. The entire fic revolves around death, and there are several gruesome scenes.

Just a warning.


There Once Were Two Green Eyes


A man let out a painful scream that echoed through a house in the middle of the night.

Sweat poured down the man’s face as he struggled to feel his way down the narrow hall. Eyes clenched tight, the pale white walls around him seemed to sway, letting go of all ties to reality. He fell to the ground with a dull thump. His hands balled up into fists, he pounded on the floor with all his might, as if trying to break a hole straight through it. The man was troubled; he was in agony. Tears ran down his cheeks, blending in with the myriad drops of sweat. As he had thought when it began, the past had come back to haunt him.

He crawled his way to the foot of the door, struggled to his feet, and opened it. It was a bathroom. He fell against the wall to the left, and with a pained expression, raised a hand to flip the light switch. The bathroom was tiny; it had a small sink that lay directly in front of the door, and a toilet to the right. Beige colored square tiles plainly made the floor, and a small navy blue rug was laid out in front of the toilet.

The man turned, set both hands on the edge of the sink, and stared deep into the mirror. His eyes were green, but a strange glow of lifelessness was reflected. He was young, in his early twenties, and his hair was dirty and messy. Breathing heavily, his hands began to shake fiercely, but he had a bizarre expression, as if he was deep in thought. His eyes were afraid though; they were petrified stare of emerald. There was something he had been hiding, something horrible, but he couldn’t tell anyone… Not a soul…

The outside wall of a house shook as the figure of an animal was thrown against it. The small orange and black beast fell to the ground with a dull thump and lay limply on the hard, packed dirt. An elongated shadow stretched across the ground to the edge of a forest as the last rays of bleeding sunlight gleamed over the trees. The shadow belonged to the same man in the mirror but with a resounding difference—he was several years younger, and instead of being filled with a terrible pain, he was fuming with anger.

They seemed to be in the middle of nowhere, what looked to be a wild jungle. A small patch of clearing large forest was where a shabby brick house stood. Two paths extended from the house—one leading out of the forest from the porch, the other from the back that led deeper in.

Struggling, the small canine-like animal rose. Its fluffy white tail was tattered and dirty, and its small claws dug into the thick soil for support. The creature’s eyes were filled with confusion and terror. The man advanced towards the creature and his shadow seemed to extend further as if to become a beast itself. The canine shivered slightly.

“It’s your fault… Just like the others…”

The man crept towards the house slowly; the pattering of his shoes sounded unusually loud in the silence of the forest. He stopped next to the wall and stared down with resentment at the orange creature and grasped a rusty shovel that lay propped against the brick of the house. The edge of it seemed to be tinged a strange dark red color. Taking one step towards the canine, his mouth twitched slightly. He was overflowing with an unfathomable hatred and why this was didn’t make any sense at all…

“If you can’t do what is commanded of you, you’re nothing but a burden to me and a failure to yourself.”

He stared at the creature, which turned its head in confusion. It stared in fear at the shovel that had slowly begun to rise in the air. For a short moment, the man seemed to hesitate, but he soon covered that up with a terribly wicked smile. His eyes flickered with a strange intensity, and a small, almost insane chuckle was barely audible. The shovel fell with a rain of crimson fluid and an echoing, hollow scream. Silence soon followed, until it was broken by the sound of a dragging body. A trail of dark red led into the forest, the sun finally out view.


Shovel in one hand and a bloodied body under the other arm, the man trudged down the path, slashing at wild, thorny bushes that cluttered his way. He was doing this constantly; the forest was as dark as the night sky which was blocked by the thick treetops. However, this seemed almost routine to the man.

He soon arrived at a small patch of dirt, visible through the moon’s light that shone through an opening in the treetops. Several strange lumps of dirt, about seven or eight of them, were raised from the ground. Small sections of dirt had fallen away due to the rain and wind, leaving bits of bone and decaying flesh. The horrible stench would have been unbearable anyone else, but it seemed to have no effect on the man. It almost seemed enjoyable to him. Visible in the silvery light, the man’s green eyes flashed with a glint of what unmistakably looked like pride.

He walked towards an untouched area in the ground, dropped the animal carelessly, slammed the edge of the shovel into the dirt, and began to dig. In a short time he was covered in sweat and had a hole just big enough for the mangled corpse, which he grabbed by the tail and tossed in. He turned the end of the shovel on its side and messily scraped the dirt onto the corpse, completely covering it. The man turned amd walked away down the path and back to his home, a smirk creeping across his face.

The contemplative horror of the man turned to a deranged fury. He couldn’t bear to look at himself; he didn’t want to relive those memories. It had begun not long ago; he had started to feel this pain on the inside. It was something that ignited when he saw his reflection and he couldn’t ignore it. He had always turned away from it, but it had become too much to bear.

With a pained anger, the man thrust a fist directly into the mirror, shattering it. He clenched his bleeding fist at his side and stared down at the pieces of shattered glass. His eyes seemed so much grayer than they once were.

Panting heavily, the man closed his eyes. At the time, he believed that what he did was justified. He was overcome with an obsession that became insanity, and his beliefs were beyond horrible. The man held skill and strength above all else, and couldn’t tolerate them to struggle and fall behind. Disposing of those who failed and were weak, he believed he would succeed as a trainer. Yet, after all was finished, he himself ended up failing.

Soon the terrible realization came, followed by tormenting guilt. He couldn’t sleep because of it. Now, he had come to see why he had been wrong, and he was horrified.

Slowly, with a shaking hand, he picked up a piece of glass. He knew he couldn’t bring them back; there was only one thing to do to even come close to justifying their death. And although his life wouldn’t make up for theirs, it was the only answer. There wasn’t another option for him.

He caught a reflection of his terrified face in the glass and tried to keep calm. But he was always afraid of death, incredibly ironic after what he had done. The man knew he had to force himself; he had to take control of himself or else it would not be done. He had to do it. Falling to his knees and then onto his back, he stared ahead at the ceiling, shaking tremendously.

Blood leaked out of his hand as he clutched the glass tighter. Would he scream? He feared dying more than anything, but he didn’t want to die a coward. He wanted to end his life calmly. Screaming would only show that he wanted to stay in this world, even if it meant to remain being tortured. The expression on his face suddenly became solemn as flashes of those he wrongfully murdered shot through his mind, and he took a deep breath.

Blood poured from his wrist.

He did not scream. Instead, he smiled.

Joe Vega #4
6th November 2005, 8:32 PM
... Woah. I could really picture everything that happened. Poor Growlithe. Then again, I'm not much of a dog lover. This is one of the best one-shots I've ever read, though.

jirachiman876
7th November 2005, 11:17 PM
nice job flames. Good shot. I liked it. I couldn't really find any mistakes in there nor anything else of badness. Glad to finally read something of yours again. Other than your and billeh's fic. I really like your work. It has improved much. Well hope to see more stuff from you in the furture.
jirachiman out ;385;

FloatingFlames
8th November 2005, 4:21 AM
The Dark Knight - Never seen you around before. I'm glad you liked the one-shot, and I'm honored that you say it's one of the best you've read, but there's many others that are better than this. This one only took me about a week to write, compared to others of mine that I started months ago and still haven't finished. I hope you stick around for some more one-shots I have planned though (that hopefully will come out sometime within the decade).

jirachiman - My faithful reviewing buddy, thanks for the review. I'm sad to see how slow this is taking off though. =/ I think this improved a bit from my old one-shot (which I thought was my best, but that's not saying much). Thanks for the kind words, and I'm glad you couldn't find any mistakes, because you seem to have talent at finding errors in my work.

mindripper
8th November 2005, 1:53 PM
Continuing my spree of one-shot reviews here. Let me tell you the thing which bugged me most here. I know about why the fella wanted to end his own life, but why? I get the abstract extrapolation of his current state and that of a few years ago, but the linkage is incomplete, and I do feel that this would be the most important part of the story's emotional core, an explanation of deeds, and you kinda left it out, IMO.

Now that I got that over with, I do like the use of temporal meshings, especially the impact they have on emotions. Letting a reader see what the same character was like before often accentuates the difference much better than any form of prose or narration. However, was killing those pokemon the only way out?

I like the haunted look on the protaganist's face, and it did seem that he was indeed suffering on the inside. It is a poignant truth that those who are readiest to deal out death with little reason are often those most afraid of being on the receiving end, and I am glad that you agree with that as well. I really liked that fact. Perhaps I can cover that in one of my future one-shots as well, if it is ok.

All in all, I do think that this work could have been longer, and with more explanation provided, but is a competent work as of now. I have no idea what your previous one-shot was like, but I expect a further improvement in the future. Nice coverage of very true issues, and well done.

FloatingFlames
8th November 2005, 2:56 PM
I get the abstract extrapolation of his current state and that of a few years ago, but the linkage is incomplete, and I do feel that this would be the most important part of the story's emotional core, an explanation of deeds, and you kinda left it out

Hmm... I suppose that's a valid point. I thought I delved deep enough though, and explained why he felt he had to do what he did. I used the Growlithe as an example of what would happen after a Pokemon lost in battle. Though when I think about it, I think you're right, I could've gone more indepth with his emotions, mainly nearing the end (where those emotions revealed themselves).


Letting a reader see what the same character was like before often accentuates the difference much better than any form of prose or narration. However, was killing those pokemon the only way out?

He thought it was. You have to realize as I mentioned that he was so obsessed that he reached a point of insanity and forgot all moral boundaries. After he failed at the original goal he set out to achieve, he became aware of his mistake. Insanity was a major point in my old one-shot and it's a factor that I love writing about. Glad you liked it.

mindripper
8th November 2005, 3:02 PM
I think that acts of villainy do not a good villain make, but rather the latter is often a result of a great lead-in and a symphathy factor. For example, a villain who was merely the victim of circumstance is much more believable than Leatherface, and with a bit more work you could have done something like that as well, IMO.

I know that he could not accept failure. Which is why I wanted the work to be longer, to flesh out points like this which seem very ambiguous right now. As a reader, I would dearly love to be socked cold with characterisation.

Well, it stil does not detract from the fact that it was a competent work. Btw, I am going to use the moral issue i lauded above in the future perhaps. Ok with you?

FloatingFlames
8th November 2005, 3:08 PM
Perectly fine.

Kiyohime
10th November 2005, 5:55 AM
I spied only one mistake-- "lied" should have been "lay."

I must say, this sent shivers up and down my spine. You went in such visual and visceral imagery of the man's insanity and his horror at himself, I was on the edge of my seat. 0_0 It's certainly not for the faint of heart, and though I always tiptoe around the subject of suicide, it does seem as though the man truly sought to seek redemption and that was the only path he could see.

I love the title of this story, and my favorite descriptive phrase was the echoing, hollow scream of the Growlithe as it was slain. That part was what made me shudder. XD

Ryano Ra
12th November 2005, 2:37 AM
O.O

I never knew you possessed such beautiful talent in horror and visual effects, Flames. Your description in the tantalizing emerald eyes and the visual details of it interweaved with each other and sprouted into a beautiful short tale. The Growlithe suffered such a great death, and sorrows go out to it. This truly had me thinking about trainers, fatality, and Pokemon, and how they play a role with one another and how fatality can affect a trainer or a Pokemon. I just loved the green eyes, that was particularly the best description ever in the story. The story starts off strongly, though ended in a more softed, less horrifying tone. Neverthelessly, it added to the magnificent flow. You are a very talented author in the visual fields and the mansion of horror. Great job, Flames.

Seijiro Mafuné
13th November 2005, 3:07 AM
Well, so that's how it looks normally.

By the way, what is the correct past form of lie?

Sike Saner
13th November 2005, 3:23 AM
Amazing.

God, that was just...brrr...

I don't know quite where to start with this...there was this harrowing, unnamed feeling you achieved in that character...

And that ending! Bloody brilliant:


He did not scream. Instead, he smiled.

Dang...

Very well-described, too; everything. Something very easy to get engrossed in. ...I'm borderline speechless right now, so perhaps...perhaps I should just depart...Goodbye, and good show! *shuffles away*

IceKing
13th November 2005, 9:44 PM
FLAMER! What is up foo'?

You completed your deal and listened to hip hop music and therefore I will review your fic. Im going to discuss different parts of teh fic and then give an overall review


Introduction (Beginning-Italics)

I LOVED the descriptions and details in this little part. Very vivid and I could clearly picture his suffering agony as he rushed into the bathroom. Reminds me of a Linkin Park music video ;P When I read it at first I was thinking that he was being chased, but reading it more carefully I can clearly see your message. Personally, I think you should have had him throw something to make his self agony more clear but thats just extraneous (I used a language arts word!)

Flashback/Italics

Three words. BEA-UTI-FUL! That was an amazing scene especailly when he killed the Growlithe and he was beginning to falter in his horridness. I wish you described the look of fright on the Growlithe's face and made his innocence stand out because that would have been very awesome. It was very sad as well. I felt the second part was a bit extraneous (TWICE IN ONE REVIEW! Mrs. Moss will love me...) because the shovel falling down scene was the very climax and it would have been nice to left it at there.


Ending

I felt this part wasnt as powerful as the others but still nevertheless a good ending. I loved the way you carried out the symbolism of the mirror, that was simply fantabulous and not extraneous! You could really feel the emotions boiling hear and I loved how you said how he fears death because that was some great irony. I personally didnt like the last two lines as the ending, I think you could have done some thing better

Overall-VERY NICE! Great symbolism and meaning. Just felt a few parts needed tweaking and maybe carry out a more powerful overall theme

Burnt Flower
18th November 2005, 10:09 PM
Nooo....that poor Growlithe... I honestly felt sorry for it; I have a very soft spot for this Pokemon. :(

It's rare to see a horror one-shot these days (*cough*), so this is a very welcome surprise. I also thought the deranged man was being chased by some Pokemon, but as I continued reading, I realized I was completely wrong - he was being chased by his own personal demons. I really liked the ending and contrary to what others thought, I believe it was the most dramatic part of the whole one-shot; I didn't find it weak - quite the opposite, actually. :3 Let me just say that I was pretty impressed with this story, Flames.

...Now where's my salsa? :p

Xiang
19th November 2005, 3:28 PM
The whole reason I enjoy one-shots: they are usually always good quality and have deep meaning. You did it well. ^^

And nice vocabulary. o.o

FloatingFlames
20th November 2005, 4:01 AM
Scrap: *edits... a week ago* *coughs* Sorry for responding to my reviews so late. It's great to hear such praise, especially from a successful horror author such as you. I feel that insanity is one thing I do best in one-shots, and I plan on incorporating slight elements of that into future one-shots, and one of my future (and I mean FUTURE, I don't plan to start writing it until the end of spring) fics, entitled Heaven Smiles: Twisted Sanity which directly tackles the issue. Thanks again!

Serpent Syra: =D I'm glad I pulled off the description successfully. I felt the flashback scene was the strongest point of the fic, but I feel I did pretty good with the ending too. Also, I'm happy that I'm recognized as a talented horror author as you said, because that's what I'm shooting for. It's doubtful that I'll ever be as successful as Scrap or Burnt Flower, but I can try dammit! ;_; XD Thanks for the review.



Very well-described, too; everything. Something very easy to get engrossed in. ...I'm borderline speechless right now, so perhaps...perhaps I should just depart...Goodbye, and good show! *shuffles away*

Sike Saner: XD XD XD That's what I was going for. I'm glad I achieved it, and thanks so much for letting you know that. That's usually the reaction I'm trying to get out of the reader when I'm writing a fic like this. And I'm so glad you feel the same way about the ending, I think that the ending is perfect, and it was probably my favorite line in the fic. Really appreciate you reviewing.

IceKing: *tackles the illegal immigrant* >_>;; Only joking buddy. Thanks for stopping by, and curse you for putting down that rap song I sent you. Ahem. That's quite the review there. Anyways, I agree with you that the ending wasn't all that it could've been, but I was pretty satisfied with the final lines although you seem to disagree there. That was a really thorough evaluation of the fic and It's good to see indepth reviews like that.

Burnt Flower: Wooo, you reviewed before the year was over! =P Hmm, did it really seem like he was being chased? I didn't mean for it to be percieved that way, but that's interesting. I'll have to read through that again. *puts a large bowl of salsa and chips on the non-existent table* Thanks, and enjoy. =)

Burakki: Always, ALWAYS glad to see a new face. Thank you so much for reading my fic, and thank you for your praise. But if you think I have a broad vocabulary, you should read some of Syra's work =D