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Raven (Vampires, Werewolves, Demons, Angels!) (1 Viewer)

Akroma

Senior Member
Please don't plagiarise, as this is my pride and joy. No offence is intended in any way or form concerning the content of this story. I have tried not to include any unsuitable material for this site but if you find something offensive, please feel free to contact me and I offer my deepest apologies.

This is a story about three parallell worlds - the human world, the demon world and the world of angels. It is about vampires, werewolves, a war and friendship and love. So if all these things take your fancy, read on!

A word of warning - I'm trying to make it into a proper novel-style book so some chapters will be pretty long...but I've put regular breaks in them so it's easier to leave then pick up again when you get tired of reading. The first couple of chapters I also realise aren't that great but please stick with it, I promise it will get a lot better. More action and magic and...well...stuff. Hope you enjoy it!

Just as an edit, quite a lot of people are printing this off to read because it's so long. If you want to do that, Private Message me and I'll send you a printable version because, apparently, if you tried to print from here it would be like 100 pages. My version is only 53 or something...still a lot but if you can do it on both sides...well!





Prologue




The snow falls thickly upon the city of Asperia, fluttering and swirling in the wind like so many feathers. Feathers so white and pure as if from the wings of angels, frozen into those delicate crystalline shapes only my eyes can perceive. They swirl round and round in a whirlwind of controlled chaos to land oh so lightly upon the ground, already forming a deep blanket upon the rooftop on which I stand, unmoved by the wind, unbitten by the cold.​


Far below me the streets glitter with the warm welcoming lights of the human world; shops and restaurants, flickering street lamps and the forever passing lights of transport. Transport now so developed that the air is thick with it, like a swarm of mechanical wasps barely avoiding each other. Down below people make their way along streets that wind in sharp angles around their tall sky scrapers, walking fast, lost in a world of their own as they march heavily against the snow, completely undisturbed by the swarming turmoil above them.

Though several hundred feet below me, I hear their footsteps as they crush the fragile stars of ice beneath their feet; their muttered conversations; even the slight jangling of keys in pockets as I block out the consistent roar of machinery. I see a family of birds taking refuge in a congested gutter, now accustomed to this world of metal.

As I watch from my eyrie, I wonder at how much the world has changed since my death. Everything completely transformed from what it was almost seven hundred years ago when I was still alive – a young woman in my mid-twenties. That part of my life I have almost forgotten…almost.

I stand on the brink, looking out at this scar that is Asperia. Once a beautiful and historical city, it is now a slave to electricity like so many others. The old Saints Bridge is broken and the winding cobbled streets lined with old houses are demolished. Nothing historical is left in this world of modernisation. All tradition has ceased to exist.

Still I am glad that the great forests and plains of the continent are left untouched, the extensive cities dotting around it like colossal craters in the earth. The humans quickly realised that without the natural regions, their race would perish. An immense wall was raised around the city and no one now ventures far into the reaches of the wilderness, fearing the unknown that lies within its dark boundaries. Childbirth is controlled. Food is plentiful. And the humans live on in peace within their metal cocoon, still ignorant and unaware of the worlds that live parallel alongside them.

Something awakens inside me. I know that before long I must gain sustenance. I have stood here for too long watching the human world, listening to the soft rain of snow, feeling it brush my white cheeks. Somewhere beyond the walls a wolf is howling. It is time to go home.

For the first time in hours I stir; a blink; a flexing of the fingers. Then I launch myself into the swirling mass of chaos below me. It seems for eternity that I fall, narrowly avoiding high speed aircrafts and vehicles. As if time itself is slowed right down, I see the train intercepting my line of fall, a gigantic centipede of the sky. Vertically driving snow smashes against its windscreen, too slow to avoid its soaring velocity. As it passes beneath me, I reach out a hand and feel the smooth metal sliding underneath my fingertips as it passes by. Then my fingers grasp a handhold and all of a sudden time seems to speed up again.

I am yanked to my left so quickly that it should have broken my bones. But it does not. I hang on tightly as the train veers and spirals through the air, bringing me closer to the Wall. When I am as close to it as possible, I loosen my hold and slip off the vehicle, landing neatly upon another rooftop. The feeling inside me is strong now; I know I must be swift. Here, near the Wall, Asperia is quieter; less people are inclined to leave the warmth of their homes for the bustling night-life at the centre.

A man walks beneath me. He strolls nonchalantly, hands in pockets, whistling softly. His scent is warm and musky, mingled with the slight hint of leather and tobacco; I catch the shampoo in his hair; the salt of his skin; the blood in his veins.

I follow him, moving easily over the rooftops or across the building faces, creeping like a panther; a shadow flowing like liquid night across the hard stone walls. Still several feet above him, I step to the edge of a sheer drop. I look into the black chasm below and jump.

Such a fall would kill a human being, shattering bones in the impact, but I land silently behind the unsuspecting man with the precision of a cat. It is dark here. Very dark. A backstreet between houses. I feel bad for this stranger. But he is one of many; so many.

He is young, still untouched by the cruel lines of time, his body exquisitely built. His scent is strong now, almost driving me to madness, the hunger rising up inside me like a wave. He does not notice my presence until I am swept up beside him, holding him close. A gasp of surprise escapes his lips as I bury my face in his neck, my lips brushing his smooth skin. He struggles but his strength is no match to mine. I press him closer, feeling the perfectly toned muscles beneath his shirt, my fingers entwining with his silky hair. Such perfection in my arms, his warm flesh against me almost too much to bear. He utters a low groan as I sink my teeth into his neck.

Images come to me then. Many images as I feel his life flowing over my tongue, quenching my thirst. His name is Lukas. He works at a restaurant. He has a girlfriend; she is very beautiful. He dreams of being married to her one day and working as a pilot. More images and memories crowd my head and I feel him dying.

As I lower his lifeless body to the floor, I grieve for his family; his lover; his stolen life. But I know he will go to Dantalion to be with Hsaru in that magical world I have yet to see. I both grieve and envy those that I take out of this world…


*♥*


My name is Raven, and I am one of the few vampires left in existence. This is my story; a story of love and of war; of angels and demons; and of the created races. Come with me and learn of my city, my Gods and what happened in the war between the great realms of Dantalion and Naberus. Come with me back seven hundred years ago; back to when I was still alive…and still mortal…
 
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Sephiroth

Senior Member
Nothing wrong with that as far as I can see. I absolutely loved the first paragraph describing the snow. I love snow, and the way you described it, you make it seem so mystical.
You have a real talent for description, and I think I'll be a regular viewer to this thread, and hope to help you out in any way I can.
 

Anarosa

Senior Member
vampires and werewolves and demons, oh my!

alright, i watched the wizard of oz very recently

but all kidding aside. this was a great way to start off a story. and i agree about the description of the snow.

if i saw this book in a store and picked it up to read the back cover, this is the kind of book i would buy.

very nice
 

Anarosa

Senior Member
just 2 more things

i love the name raven... but i cant tell if its a she or a he..? eek!

and also i think this is going to have a sad ending...but i hope not.

anyway, good work
 

Akroma

Senior Member
Anarosa said:
i love the name raven... but i cant tell if its a she or a he..? eek!

Lol, Raven's a girl. I guess I should have put that in somewhere...But I guess you'd have found out on the second chapter :queen: And I wont spoil the ending for you ;)

Thanks for your comments, everyone. It's nice to know that something's going right lol. :mrgreen:
 

Anarosa

Senior Member
no problem. haha its cool, i want the ending to be surprising

oh yeah, and i have this feeling that you are one of those people who has a big thing for anything supernatural. vamps. werewolve. shape-shifters. anything like that. am i right?

if i am, then you are going to like alot of my stories i think...or atleast my characters. haha

any preference for demi-gods? because i have one of those too..

anyway.. enough self-promotion, ive barely even started posting those stories yet.

(but there is a bit in the critique and advice section thats from the one with the god...*wink*)
 

spannyka

Member
Hey,

I love the imagry thats spelt wrong that you've used in the prologue its better than it was originally. Can't wait to see where you are taking this I'll see you soon.
Love you
 
Wow! This is great! Your craft of words is wonderful! I agree, this is the type of book I would read. I will be back to read more.
 

Chaeronia

Senior Member
Dear Akroma,

Your beginning has a strong sense of the aesthetic, the stylistic, something which can be emphasised within the less formal boundaries of a prologue. You exploit this well, and it gives the necessary hook to continue reading on. I enjoyed it a great deal.

Some of your descriptions are a delight:

I stand on the brink, looking out at this scar that is Asperia.

I see the train intercepting my line of fall, a gigantic centipede of the sky.

...a shadow flowing like liquid night across the hard stone walls.


These are highlights amidst a generally well-written and poetic narrative.

You also hint at a potentially very interesting character in Raven. It is clear she does what she does out of necessity; she is not inspired by malice, nor just hunting for sport. She feels guilt for taking life, and this of course suggests a human sensibility, essential for a protagonist. But she is also pragmatic, accepting what she has to do to survive, and therefore not overly sentimental. This is a nice juxtaposition.

As is important with such expressive openings, you mostly avoid the trap of exposition. You show us what she can see, and you don't submit to any clunky explanations of the world at large. This is our introduction to Raven more than it is to the city of Asperia, and your writing conveys this well.

However, in saying this, you do perhaps explain too much to us in your sixth paragraph (Still I am glad...), one which, to me, felt a little forced and out of context with the rest of the piece. And whilst I am being a little critical, there were one or two issues that I would quickly like to touch upon.

Firstly, the opening paragraph, whilst artistically written, left me feeling indifferent. I didn't feel this at any other point in your prologue, but here I couldn't help but think 'style over substance'. So many stories in the fantasy genre begin climatologically, explaining in great and wondrous detail the every day occurrence of precipitation or sunshine. It feels like you are trying a little too hard in your opening paragraph, and it adds little to the story itself.

Secondly, there were just one or two segments of narrative that grated with me:

That part of my life I have almost forgotten…almost.

Vertically driving snow smashes against its windscreen


The use of the 'almost... almost' tool seems a little tired these days. It sounds punchier, and less hackneyed, without the second 'almost'.

The use of 'smashes' as the adverb seems out of place, a little excessive.

These are small things, though, and, of course, merely my opinions (all other reviewers here seem to love the opening, so what do I know?). They certainly don't detract from what is an excellent and enticing beginning. I have no doubt that I would read more, should you decide to post it, and who can ask for more than that?

Kind regards,

Chaeronia
 

aliceedelweiss

Senior Member
Nice job there :) Two projects I have also done before, Vampires and Angels. Of course it was done separately but...oh well.

It was very good :) written very well, creative, got my attention. I'm really looking forward to reading more. I'm hoping you do a good job with vampires. I'd have to say Underworld (the movies) didn't do much for me at all. I just want to warn you though, try to be mindful of clichés! I didn't see any but, "angels and demons" "angels and vampires" "love and war" its all edging on cliché. I'm sure you've got some really great idea behind it, and I'm not saying I saw anything cliché, I just wouldn't want to see it go cliché at all, not with your writing skill.

Hope to see more soon, good job!

Alice
PS: I hate to push my own writing, makes me feel vain, but you might like some of mine. My vampire piece I took off the forum (I sent it into a contest) but if you want I can PM you work ;-) again, awesome job
 

Akroma

Senior Member
Thanks, Chaeronia for your advice! I'll have a look over the prologue :thumbl: Yeah I guess I wanted to put in a lot of detail at the beginning cos Raven's eyes can see so much more detail than she can write and she likes to sometimes go off on one lol...and she has a really strong appreciation for everything beautiful and poetic. It's how she sees the world :flower:

Alice. I'd love to read some of your work. I'll keep an eye out for you ;-)

Thanks for your comments everyone!

x x x
 
I must say I really enjoyed the Prologue and I'll be checking all the time for updates. Also if I wasn't a man this piece would probably made me shed a tear, that's how good your description was...
 

Akroma

Senior Member
Ok! here we go! Load you computer desk with snacks and soda and perhaps put a cushion under your bum, cos if you read as slow as I do, you'll be here for a while. But do feel free to breaks, you know make a cup of tea...have some friends round...get a facial...



Chapter 1


I awoke with a flinch to the harsh scream of my alarm. Still half asleep, I reached out an arm, my hand blundering across the bedside table until my fingers came into contact with the “off” button. I then lay still, waiting for my heart to settle back down into my chest before letting myself doze again. The man beside me stirred but did not wake. I looked at him as best I could, with our naked bodies entwined together beneath the sheets, and smoothed away his long black hair, kissing him on the forehead. My prince. My knight in shining armour.

“Honey?” I said softly, caressing his beautifully sculpted face. “It’s time to get up.” He mumbled something inaudible and buried his face into my neck, refusing to rise. I sighed and held him closer, savouring the feeling of his warm soft skin against mine. I rubbed my thumb against his silken lips then tenderly kissed him, a delightful shiver running through me.

A smile tugged at the corners of his lips and Sethis slowly opened his eyes, an intense blaze of blue meeting my dark forest green.

“Morning,” he said in a husky voice heavy with sleep. He then grinned and pulled me closer for another kiss. Still, after six years, he had that power that could melt me down into a helpless pool of wax from a single look; a single word; a single kiss.

“Raven,” he murmured, “my heart.”

I smiled and gave him a squeeze as I held him, my eyes settling on the window and the cloudless sky outside. After a while he disentangled himself from me and looked at my face.

“Penny for your thoughts,” he said, that familiar line making me smile again, always spoken when we knew the other was thinking hard about something. I hesitated.

“I just can’t imagine being without you,” I whispered. His smile did not fade but his eyes became serious and he nodded.

“I just…feel that it can’t last, you know?” I continued. “Like something’s going to happen; something that’ll tear us apart.” Tears came unbidden to my eyes, the sudden emotion of sadness welling up inside me from the thought.

Sethis’ smile was gone now, his intense eyes full of concern. Without hesitation he reached for a tissue and gently soaked up my tears with it, caressing my cheeks and holding me in his secure embrace. “Hey, don’t cry,” he whispered soothingly. “Don’t cry.”

“If something happened to you…I couldn’t live…I couldn’t live without you,” I said. “I couldn’t bear it, not seeing your face; feeling your touch; hearing your voice…And I just know that sooner or later it really will happen. We’ll get old…one of us will die before the other…knowing that I’ll never see you again or you never seeing me again…”

“Sshhh,” Sethis cut through my ramblings. “Don’t think about that. Nothing’s going to tear us apart. I’ll love you forever, ok?” He lifted my face so that his eyes looked directly into mine. “Ok?”

I smiled crookedly and nodded. “Ok.” I felt foolish for getting so emotional on him first thing in the morning. “Sorry,” I added sheepishly.

“Don’t be,” he whispered and pulled me closer. “Besides,” his smile coming back, “I’m going to live forever!” I laughed at his little jest.

“Really! I am,” he protested. “And so are you.” I smiled at the thought, immediately feeling better from his comforting presence.

After a moment he said, “I’ll go make us some breakfast.” Sethis gently released me then got out of bed, pulled on some boxers (left on the floor from the night before), some black jeans and went downstairs. While he was clattering around in the kitchen, I stepped into the shower. The warm water washing over me was refreshing and it woke me up completely.

When I came out of the bathroom, wrapped in my dressing gown, Sethis was standing in front of the door grinning. I knew what he was thinking. Without warning he pulled me into his arms again, his lips against mine, his hands tenderly exploring a way into the silk gown to my bare skin.

“We don’t have time,” I murmured. “We’re already late for work.”

He smiled and continued kissing me. “There’s always time,” he whispered ever so softly in my ear. The dressing gown came free and I was lost, tumbling and falling into a world where there was only the softness of his touch, the fire of desire, the sound of his breathing, and nothing else.


*♥*


Work was chaotic. Several days in the field had left us with a lot of data to analyse. If we were to be conserving Asperia’s wildlife, it had to be done thoroughly. All those statistics and hours of staring at a computer made my head hurt and my eyes tired. Constantly my mind would wander to Sethis. Was he having a good day teaching at the school? I smiled to myself knowing that he certainly enjoyed it. And no doubt I enjoyed working with the environment. But there were those days that really made you want to scream.

But it did put a smile on my face every time I imagined Sethis in a class full of teenagers all arguing about different subjects in sociology. His empathic soul and strong opinions made him just right for the job. Besides, in some respects he will always remain a big kid to me. Just because one gets older doesn’t mean they have to grow up. I laugh to think we’d still be acting like kids at the age of seventy-five! No different than our gambolling little grandchildren! Grinning to myself, I picked up the computer mouse and carried on working.

At last the sun set over the horizon and it all drew to a close. I thankfully burst out of the office block, only to find that it was raining. I silently cursed the weather, drew my coat tighter around me and plunged into the dark downpour. I walked fast, eager to get home to Sethis; a small smile playing on my lips as I imagined him holding me in his strong embrace, stripping me of my wet clothes, and…

Suddenly my phone rang, shattering my dreams. I fumbled around in my bag, ducked under an overhang for shelter and picked up.

“Hello?”

“Hey, Honey.” It was Sethis. “Did your day go ok?”

“Busy,” I replied with a sigh. “I’m so tired. Just on my way home now.”

“Well be careful, my love. You know how dangerous it is walking round the city at night on your own. I just called to say that I’ll be coming home late tonight.” My heart sank. “There are a few more things we need to sort out after the parent’s evening, and then they’re all going to the pub for a drink.”

“Oh…” I said, crestfallen, “well…I know you have to go…good to keep up appearances I guess and it might be a bit rude for you not to...”

“I’m so sorry, Honey,” he said. “You know I’d rather just come home and be with you. I promise I’ll try not to be too late. How about I bring home some Chinese? Dim sum...? We can eat it while watching that film you wanted to see tonight on TV?”

I smiled and said “I’ll be counting down the hours.”

“OK,” he said softly. After a pause he said, “I love you.”

So many times he said this to me but it never lost its meaning. The full force and passion of those three words hit me like an ecstasy in my soul every time. I knew it six years ago when we first started going together, I a young girl of nineteen, he a few months younger.

“I know. And I love you,” I replied, amazed at how a simple phone signal could send a message containing all my heart, all my soul and all my life.

We hung up and I carried on walking.


*♥*


I was five minutes away from our house when it happened: the event that changed my life forever. Our house was a beautiful old cottage on the outskirts of Asperia, surrounded on three sides by lush green forests and rolling fields. I could see our horses grazing in the paddock; an owl hooting softly at the night. Thinking of Sethis, I slowly began to walk up the long tree-lined driveway to our home.

It happened so fast that I didn’t even have time to scream. All I remember was a shadow dropping out of the sky, black cloaks curling around me in the darkness. The white face of a woman filled my vision, her luminescent violet eyes burning into mine; such beautiful yet haunting eyes. Her hair fell like a shower of pure gold around me and fingernails dug into my back as I was held in a grip of steel. I felt her chest rise as she inhaled deeply as if taking in my scent, her lips brushing my skin. Then I felt it. The pinprick of pain in my neck as she bit.

Right at that moment, as her fangs sank deep into my veins, a kaleidoscope of images raced through me. Scenes of my life snapped from one to the other so fast; my childhood; my family; my friends. The images stopped flitting by and one managed to hold in my mind. Sethis. It was an image I had of him when we were in university. I’d just walked into his room. He had suddenly looked up from what he was doing and I was completely entranced just looking at him; his intense blue eyes, his lustrous black hair, the curve of his lips…then he would smile, that infectious expression burning into my mind, the tender look in his eyes filling me with a peace that was calming. I reached out for him, wanting to touch him. Why was he getting so far away?

Suddenly the real world lurched back into focus. I was lying on my back on the hard rock-strewn floor, rain blinding my eyes, drenching me to the bone. Confused and weak, the world spinning about me, I looked around. The vampire had dropped me, distracted by the wound in her breast, a bloodied knife grasped in her hand; a knife like no other I’d seen before. Blood was pouring from the gash in copious amounts, oozing from the horrid hole and staining her dress. Her high-pitched screams seared through my head.

Fear drove me at that moment. Pure, blinding fear. I turned and stumbled away as fast as I could, throwing myself into a trench on the roadside, only vaguely aware of the blood still flowing down my neck.

From my hiding place I witnessed the vampire stand a deadly shower as more knives sank into her, exploding through her flesh before she finally fell to the ground, her screaming body disintegrating before my eyes. Trembling in fear, I cowered in the shelter of the trench. But I could not tear my eyes away. I just lay there and watched as her flesh crumbled away into dust, those violet eyes rolling out of the decomposing skull before melting away into nothing. Even her black dress and cloaks were crumbling away with her until there was absolutely nothing left at all. I was filled with horror and a wave of nausea rose up in my throat.

Suddenly I heard footsteps approaching. I held my breath, the beating of my heart thumping loud in my ears. Three men appeared. At least I thought they were men…I couldn’t be sure. The blinding rain and the confusion in my head showed me three shadowy figures shaped like men, but taller and thinner as if they were wraiths. Their mouths were stretched into gaping black maws and their eyes were no more than empty sockets. The creatures stood around the vicinity where the vampire died, those ethereal knives clutched in their blackened claws. As I watched, a shiver ran down my spine; a dread filling me so completely that it was all I could do to stop myself from screaming and falling into insanity.

Not a word was exchanged between those demons of fear. They just looked on with eyeless sockets, making sure that their prey was truly dead. Then, without warning, they turned and disappeared as inexplicably as they had arrived.

Still shivering, I waited until I was sure they’d gone, and then emerged from my hiding place. As I stood up the floor lurched and tilted, my head spinning. There was hardly any strength left in me and I could barely stand. Soaked to the bone, numb with cold, and trembling with horror, I stumbled towards my apartment.


*♥*


I do not know how I managed it but I found myself at my front door; my beautiful strong dark mahogany door. Holding on to the doorframe for support, my fingernails scratching at the paint, I fumbled for my keys. My hands were trembling violently; I could barely fit the key in the lock. At last the bolt turned and I fell into my cottage, not knowing whether I closed the door behind me or not. No one was home. The place was dark and silent. I staggered towards the bedroom but before I could reach it my legs gave out beneath me. My consciousness wavered and threatened to close.

Sethis! I had to contact Sethis! I had to tell him…but I couldn’t move. My mind was in turmoil. I was too weak…too much blood…Sethis…somebody…

The black curtains fell. I passed into a dream-like haze, the darkness swirling around me, encloaking me, suffocating me. Suddenly an itching started in my skin, spreading through my whole body, slowly getting worse and worse. Soon it was on fire, my very bones crackling like hot embers inside me. Far away I heard someone screaming. Perhaps it was me. I do not know. I felt like needles were piercing my gums. My eyes were burning! God my eyes! My teeth…they were getting longer…sharper…What’s happening to me?! Someone stop this happening to me!

Suddenly, through the pain, I saw faces rise out of the darkness. Faces all around me, grim and stern yet beautiful; their eyes narrowed, their lips set in hard lines. They faded in and out as my consciousness wavered. Some looked normal. Others looked pale…too pale…the white skin too flawless…something wrong with their eyes…all their eyes…too bright…too radiant…they burned into mine as if they could see my soul.

The pain increased and they disappeared into the black abyss. Far away I could hear voices…so far away and fading fast.

“She is already turning.”

“Should we kill her? It seems she is already at death’s door…”

“No…there is something different about this one…I can sense it…no. Let us take her with us. Help her. Gently now. Lorcan, you carry her…”

I felt strong hands lifting me from the floor. A sharp prick in my arm made me cry out but then the burning seemed to lessen a little. One of the pale faces loomed out of the darkness again.

“That should make you feel a little better,” he said. He was barely audible. “Do not worry. We shall not harm you. We want to help you…”

The blackness closed in around me then, and I remembered nothing more.
 
I

invid

I have yet to read chapter one, but on the prologue, I agree with Chaeronia's comments, I am no grammar master, but from reading other critiques (really harsh critiques of Dune and Dan Brown's work) I am really aware of the technical aspects of writing at the moment. Something about the flow of the second paragraph seemed to distract me from the story, I can't really put my finger on it other than perhaps it moved my attention from the city below, to the flying aircraft etc, then back down - so that you had to remind me we were looking at 'far below' it is the far below that caught my attention. It feels more like we are going to street level, then back up to the transports, then back to street level - as opposed to looking down level by level until we are at the VERY detailed sounds and details of the people below.

I hope that doesn't come across as overly critical or anything. I am definately impressed and intrigued and look forward to diving into the first chapter!

-invid
 
M

myownbeautifuldisaster

hey, errr, i'm getting right into it, so if you could let me know when you've posted more i'd be so grateful.

also hoping to learn from you. x
 
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