Webnovel Prologue: Don't Feed the Puckwudgie after Midnight

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  1. #1
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    Webnovel Prologue: Don't Feed the Puckwudgie after Midnight

    This is m first real attempt at webnovel Or really any fom of fiction. Feedback greatly desired. I'll
    be posting the ongoing here: https://www.royalroad.com/fiction/21...after-midnight I was having trouble with posting here so I apologize for any formatting errors here.

    The pale moonlight shone on rows of glistening blue quills arrayed around a hunched back, large cream colored eyes filled with mischief and a set of far too human lips curling to reveal a toothy porcelain smile. All of these features worked to create an effortlessly eerie countenance accenting the already dreary aura of the dense forest filled with creeping kudzu like vines and menacing thorn trees.


    The only things working to undermine the otherwise spine tingling terror of the monster and the perfect portrait of a haunted forest that made up its lair was the creatures diminutive stature andthe conspicuous red running shoes that were its only piece of clothing. Instead of a feeling of fear the overwhelming emotion playing itself through my head for the past half an hour was shock and disbelief. As I came to a rest behindsome low standing bushes I was finally out of the line of sight of my pursuer and couldn’t help but give voice to those incredulous feelings, “There is noway in hell I am going to be murdered by Sonic, the Hedgehog.”


    I instantly regretted my words. Both becausethe creatures ears twitched and its grisly cartoonish head zeroed in on mydirection and because I was now imagining the possibility of those being my last words.
    My fragile psyche had just about reached its limits at th point but what truly shredded them was when the creature responded to me. “You are wrong”. The thing actually talks! The creepy little fucker was actually a walking talking eldritch horror. A tennis shoes wearing tiny eldritch horror but one that was now talking to me instead of just creepily stalking me.

    “You are wrong in many ways mortal. I am no hedgehog. This form is clearly that of a porcupine.” He smiled even more wickedly and replied to me between bouts of laughter. “It is the first skin that my kind learn to wear. But I shall soon savor wearing your skin as well!”
    It didn’t move any closer to me for the better part of a minute as its laughter continued to dramatically echo around the forest until finally tapering off. It was still unnerving but at least it was giving me a second to catch my breath and come to grips with this latest bit of crazy.

    Ok then. At least the creature had paused to menace me. I can deal with being menaced verbally. I mean at least when the other menace being offered is physical menace by having my insides torn out to make room for a creepy cartoon porcupine, which is what the said creepy cartoon porcupine had just promised to do if it caught me. Maybe I could keep it talking and make a break to get out of this part of the forest and back to thecamp and my friends?


    “Nah man. Who wants skin like this? You want the first human suit you walk around in to come with this kind of greasy complexion? What will all the other, whatever...the hell you ares say?” It replied again swiftly. “We may only wear the skin of prey that can see us as we are. Your friends in that camp would only see a porcupine if they could see meat all. They would not be able to converse. Prey is rare in this age and the other puckwudgies will praise my hunting skills and feast on the meat off of your bones, pathetic mortal!” The little guy was looking more agitated and wasslowly making its way towards my patch of bushes even as I was inching my way back onto the trailhead that would hopefully be my way out of this confrontation.


    “Even if its been a while you gotta have standards. I am just poor eating. You’re better off going vegan. It's the best diet for conscientious monsters such as yourselves.” is what I said but what Iwas thinking was, what the hell is a pukwudgie and why did I have the bad luckt o run into one of them? As predicting this underlying train of thought thepukwudgie began gleefully enlightening me of its further intentions. “We havebeen forced to live of gristle and bone! We are tricksters, shape changers, andwise hunters. Mortals have feared our poisons and our arrows ever since youtraitors leveled our forests and stole our hunting grounds. Now you are thehunted and we wear the skins of the weak in spirit to lure your kind into thedepths of the forest and into our cookpots. And when we have feasted on yourflesh and your sorrows have whetted our appetites we will compel your spirit tolinger and watch as we use your face to lure your companions to the same fate! Hahahaha!”


    That speech earned me a few precious feet and my boots finally found purchase on the bottom of the hill behind me. It would just be a mad dash up the hill and back down to make my way to the trail and soI didn’t wait for any more talk from the pukwudgie and bolted upwards as fastas my legs could carry me until I reached the top of the hill.
    Unfortunately for me my momentum carried me over the top of that hill and instead of finding theexpected trail below me I found only empty air as my momentum sent me pinwheeling over the edge of a cliff that I would have sworn wasn’t there just amoment ago. I closed my eyes bracing myself for the end. When the inevitable impact came it was as harsh as I imagined it would be. But the pain receded into a numbing shock as all sensation started pulling away from my limbs withthe feeling of pins and needles crawling slowly across my whole body.Eventually I felt nothing but a terrifying cold as my consciousness started tofade as well. The last things I remembered were the sound of the puckwudgies laughter ringing in my ears and the perverse image of gold rings spreading outfrom my body as I coughed out a tearful and delirious laugh of my own before succumbingto the darkness.
    Last edited by playerpiano; October 31st, 2018 at 04:05 AM.

  2. #2
    Good early effort, keep practicing.
    Less adverbs in your descriptions. I usually only permit myself 1 per sentence.

  3. #3
    Global Moderator H.Brown's Avatar
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    Hi Playerpiano I have read through your prologue and it is a good start. There are certain things that need to be addressed like missing words, the pace of the descriptions added. I enjoyed reading the prologue and when I am back home tomorrow I will add an in depth critique for you to look at. But for now I just wanted to say that this story could be developed further to become a great story. You have intrigue, a monstrous character that may not be all that he seems, you have a competent and clear narrative voice, it is just a case of tweaking in my opinion.

    Keep writing it. H.
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    Visit My Blog to get to know me better.Hidden Content Hidden Content A fun group of like minded new writers.
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  4. #4
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    I have a new chapter up over at Royal Road. I hope that you will read it and continue with any feedback you might have. Absolutely any response will be greatly appreciated. A rating might be nice as well XD but I am just happy for any of you taking the time to take a look at all. Thanks again! https://www.royalroad.com/fiction/21...alled-the-fuzz

  5. #5
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    https://www.royalroad.com/fiction/21...ck-bellied-god

    I have done considerable editing on the prologue and first chapter. I also hope to post two new chapters soon. Input and ratings GREATY appreciated.
    The pale moonlight shone on rows of glistening blue quills arrayed around a hunched back, large crème colored eyes filled with mischief and a set of far too human lips curling to reveal a toothy porcelain smile. All of these features worked to create an effortlessly eerie countenance accenting the already dreary aura of the dense forest filled with creeping kudzu like vines and menacing thorn trees.
    The only things working to undermine the otherwise spine tingling terror of the monster and the perfect portrait of a haunted forest that made up its lair was the creature’s diminutive stature and the conspicuous red running shoes it was wearing. Instead of a feeling of fear the overwhelming emotion playing itself through my head for the past half an hour was shock and disbelief. As I came to a rest behind some low standing bushes I was finally out of the line of sight of my pursuer and couldn’t help but give voice to those incredulous feelings, “There is no way in hell I am going to be murdered by a freaking Hedgehog.”
    I instantly regretted my words. Both because the creatures ears twitched and its grisly cartoonish head zeroed in on my direction and because I was now imagining the possibility of those being my last words. My fragile psyche had just about reached its limits when the creature responded to me. “Who is a hedgehog! Am I six inches long? Am I foraging for grubs!” The thing actually talks! The creepy little fucker was actually talking. “Your mother is a hedgehog! Your father smells of mulberries!” Was I being stalked by a tiny red tennis shoes wearing fan of British comedies? Did they even get PBS this far out in the sticks? He smiled even more wickedly and replied to me between bouts of strained laughter. “Hedgehog. You call this great me a hedgehog. First you walk through my wards ignoring all the snares and traps just to scare away my game then you have the gaul to call me a hedgehog? You didn’t even mistake me for a porcupine?! Porcupine I could understand but to mistake me for a pet!“
    As far as avoiding traps and intentionally scaring away his dinner I hadn’t done that. At least I didn’t think I had. I had been desperately lost. My cell died mere hours into my camping trip and the solar charger was not exactly useful at night. I didn't have a manual compas and I had taken the wrong trail marker for camp when I set out to answer the call of nature. Stepping off the main path to do my business the next thing I knew before I was finished the “not a hedgehog” was jumping into the moonlight and scaring the crap out of me quite literally. I had been running ever since. While it was still unnerving that the creepy little guy was now talking it was at least giving me time to catch my breath and allow my brain to come to terms with this latest insanity. Maybe if I could keep it talking I could slowly back my way onto the trailhead and hopefully back into camp. “You sure you’re a porcupine? I mean you look like a hedgehog to me. If this is about dinner I mean we can get a fire going and you can eat as many coney dogs as you like” “The “not a hedgehog” paused this time gaining me a few precious feet. It was so obviously incensed I swear I could see a vein start popping out on its disturbingly human face. “The only thing I am eating tonight is you! I am going to boil you alive and serve you to my pack mates.”
    “Ok first boiling seems so bland. I'm going to need a lot of seasoning. And even then who wants to eat a human with skin like this? Its too greasy. I’m a factory farmed nerd. I have survived on ramen and fast food. If you are what you eat then I am going to taste like familial dissapointment. What will all the other, whatever...the hell you ares say if you bring me around ?” It replied again swiftly. “We are puckwudgies! It paused to sound out each syllable. “Puck. Whuuh. Jeeze. “ agitated it started inching its way towards my position. “If we cared only for taste we would fry you up like bread! No. We are going to tear the leather from your bones and wear your skin as our own. We will see if your human friends can tell the difference between me and a porcupine then? We feed on spirit as well as flesh human. You have me angry enough to send my pack against anyone you care for as we feast on your torment. It has been countless moons since we have had a human in our cook pot. Or since we have even been seen by one! That is why the traps are here in the first place! To keep you away. To make sport of you but to be left in peace! Not insulted! Not to have ones dinner stolen”
    “Even if its been a while you got to have standards. I am just poor eating. You’re better off going vegan. It's the best diet for conscientious monsters such as yourselves. Porcupines are vegan right?” is what I said but what I was thinking was, what the hell is a pukwudgie and why did I have the bad luck to run into one of them while taking a leak. As I was contemplating that the pukwudgie began gleefully enlightening me of its further intentions. “Do you think we live on acorns mortal? You humans may be all gristle and bone but you will do. We are tricksters, shape changers, and wise hunters. Mortals have feared our poisons and our arrows and our fire since you traitors leveled our forests and stole our hunting grounds but even so there was peace. Centuries mortal! Now you will be the hunted. We will wear the skins of the weak in spirit to lure your kind back into the depths of the forest and our cookpots once more. They will curse your name while we will compel your spirit to linger and watch. Hahahaha!”
    That speech earned me a few precious feet and my boots finally found the base of the hill near the trail but I had to admit that the little guy had finally upped his game in terms of menace. I mean I can live with being menaced verbally. I had worked in customer service. Verbal meance seemed fine when compared to the actual physical meance of having my insides torn out for dinner so that a cartoon porcupine could walk around in my skin like the worst amusement park mascot in history.
    I started running as the chittering laughter intensified behind me and the Puckwudgie also took flight. I was running faster than I thought was honestly possible and just as I was about the crest the hill and make my way back to the trail my momentum carried me over the top and instead of finding the expected trail below me I found only empty air as my momentum sent me pin wheeling over the edge of a cliff that I would have sworn wasn’t there just a moment ago. I closed my eyes bracing myself for the end. When the inevitable impact came it was as harsh as I imagined it would be. But the pain receded into a numbing shock as all sensation started pulling away from my limbs with the feeling of pins and needles crawling slowly across my whole body. Eventually I felt nothing but a terrifying cold as my consciousness started to fade as well. The last things I remembered were the sound of the puckwudgies laughter ringing in my ears and the perverse image of gold rings spreading out from my body as I coughed out a tearful and delirious laugh of my own before succumbing to the darkness.

  6. #6
    I've read the original and the revised version and I must say it's great. I could completely imagine the ambient and your way of describing things is really great. It is a great way to start a novel because it catches attention and readers will want to discover more. I have one suggestion for you, tone down with the beast being humourous. I think it should be more dangerous, and the main character seems pretty chill for someone who is probably about to die now. Other than that I think the prologue is great and just keep going, I would say that in writing the hardest part comes in the middle of the project when your creativity has "expired".
    Last edited by Jakov; November 26th, 2018 at 11:05 PM. Reason: grammar

  7. #7
    As soon as I read that first sentence I got a sinking feeling of hard work in front of me. I found the sentences far too long, sometimes several lines long and generally overly descriptive. I think a lot of readers, like myself, need shorter sentences so that our minds can pause and take breath (that's close to a quote I read once from a literary figure). Normally, to enjoy a story I just need character and plot, the description can be an added bonus as long as it helps rather than oppresses. That might sound boring but the characters and plot mustn't be. Don't let the prose get in the way of a good story (almost another quote).

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