Friday, June 10, 2011

The Quest, Part Two

Note:  This is Part Two of the story.  Part One can be found here.

Garek slowly walked towards the ship he had purchased passage on, framed on each side by guards--one from the Temple of Pelor, one from the Temple of Saint Cuthbert.

The trial had not gone well.

He had presented his case well, and honestly, but it seemed the Council had, by and large, made up their minds before the trial had begun.  The questions he had asked were simple, with no real look at his character or his justifications for each choice he had made.

Did you kill an Imperial Ambassador?  'Yes, I killed a slaver, an evil man, who also had the great fortune of being an ambassador.'

Were you paid to kill him?  'No.'

Did you accept money for his death?  'I accepted a gift from the father of one of the girls who died in slavery due to his crimes.'

So his death directly profited you?  'That was not the reason I killed him.'

And yet, his death still directly profited you?

The questions continued, each as thinly-veiled as the last, trapping him with the truth.  The sentencing was quick, at the end of the trial, with the Council members convening for less than two minutes.  Permanent exile.  An attempt at appeal in ten years, but it would have to be done out-of-country, and with all twenty-one heads present--making it impossible.

"You're gonna need to wait a bit," the shipmate at the walkway leading from the dock said, eying his armor and the guards appreciatively.  It almost appeared the guards were there to protect Garek--their armor was ornate, though not quite so much as his, and all three had a weapon in reach.  Still, the paladin had no illusions--had he drawn his weapon for virtually any reason, they would draw, as well, and he would be thier first and only target."Captain doesn't allow any passengers on board until all cargo is stowed and secure."

Garek nodded, and walked to the end of the dock, staring out at the ocean.  "To Weatheroot," he said softly.  Leaving the country wasn't new to him--he'd done it dozens of times in his career.  But the thought of leaving the land that he was born, raised, and trained in much as he didn't want to admit it, that did shake him, just a little bit.

But there were more important things to be done, anyways, weren't they?  He still had a goal.  Still had an endgame.  Still had something that he had to do.

Hurried footsteps on the wood of the dock sounded behind him.  The exiled paladin paid them no mind, assuming them to be another shipmate, until he heard his name called out.

He turned to see Cadeus approaching him quickly, and then embracing him.  "I'm sorry, child.  I'm so sorry."

Garek returned the embrace.  "It's of no matter," he finally said as Cadeus stepped back.  "There is work to be completed elsewhere.  Good work."

"It breaks my heart," Cadeus finally said, softly.  "Seeing you leave.  I love you as if you were my own, boy."

Garek nodded.  "If you hadn't been there, after they died...I don't know how I would have turned out."

"All right, paladin, come on board!" the shipmate at the walkway yelled to him.  "All the cargo is secure, we're casting off!"

"On my way!"  Garek closed his eyes briefly, then called upon the Light.  He opened them to see slight auras surrounding Cadeus, the sailors, the two guards, but none of them signified evil.  He reached into one of the pouches on his belt and withdrew a sealed parcel.  "Don't open this until you can no longer see the ship on the horizon, Cadeus." He said, before he leaned close to his surrogate father and whispered, "and burn it before you let anyone else think of reading it."

With cleverly-hidden heavy footsteps, Garek, exiled paladin of the Order of the Silver Wing, walked down the dock and up the walkway to the The Losgud, the decently-sized cargo ship leading to Weatheroot, one of the largest cities in the Vigilant Empire.  He nodded at Cadeus, who had a hand raised in well-bidding, and went to find the captain, knowing his entire life had changed.

Continue to Part Three.


  1. Woah, pretty chilling story. Keep up the good work :)

  2. actions have consequences and righteous murders are still murders...

  3. love it!
    part 1 raised the bar and this met it!

  4. Now, I'm sure this will feel very picky (because it is) but one of your early sentences threw me off because it didn't feel right. Grammar and all that. And, normally, I tend to hate grammar because it's usually quite confusing. I just go with how something feels. Then again, unless I'm taking a test, my feel for grammar is right 80% of the time.

    So, anyways, this didn't sound right: "...made up their minds before the trial had began." So I mulled it over in my mind for a while before realizing it had completely distracted me from the story. Resolving to put my inner grammar nazi away (with a mallet if I had to), I started the chapter over again and powered through the offending phrase and onto the next sentence.

    After that, I had no more trouble with the chapter, and rather enjoyed it. So, I guess what I'm trying to say is, "You have good writing, but you need an editor. But then, so would I.

    Oh, and I did a quick Google search to see if your writing or my inner grammar sense was wrong, and I found the following website.

    Which, (Cliff's notes version) says you probably want "had begun." But if you want, I know a half-dozen people who are paid to look over grammar, and I can ask one of them.

    (Sorry if this shows as a re-post, I can't see my original attempt.)

  5. *Tries to think of good criticism to give*

    Really enjoying this read thus far. I'm going to try and critique it though. I hope you won't mind my input.
    I've tried to mark each piece with the paragraph and line so you can look at the points yourself.

    1:1 Garek being exiled rather early in this book seemed almost guaranteed based on chapter one. I'm not sure if you were planning on leading the reader so easily through that part of the story or not.

    9:1 "trapping him with the truth" Do you mean to imply that the truth is that he did assassinate the ambassador? Or did you mean to imply that the Council was twisting the truth to suit them? Also, is there anything that might pull the strings of the Council to make them decide to exile Garek regardless of his trial thus making the trail go so poorly?

    10:1 "You're gonna need to wait a bit" Assuming that sailors don't understand grammatical errors, I would question the "you're" in his statement. But if he is aware of his grammar lessons from whatever school he may have been in as a child? I would question the use of "gonna". Also, I'm a curious of whether you want to reflect a character's accent by their words or not. In case of the former, I would suggest "Yer" instead of "You're" and t' or "ta" instead of "to".

    10:2 "guards appreciatively." This line suggests that the sailor assumes that Garek is a man of importance. Thus, wouldn't he have said "my lord" or something to signify importance in his previous statement?

    10:4 "would be thier first and only" :O a misspelling! "Their" of course is the correct one ^.~

    10:1-5 The sailor says the captain doesn't allow passengers on prior to all the cargo. However, if Garek is being exiled, wouldn't it seem more likely that the guards with him would want to be done with him as quickly as possible? Or perhaps one or both respect Garek? There's no hint to the guard's backgrounds and personalities which could easily hint to Garek's personality and past ^.~ If the guards are hostile to Garek, they might argue about letting him on immediately. If the guards favor Garek for some reason, it might show that there are some in the Paladin order or what have you that view Garek as justified in his actions against the Ambassador.

    11:1 "To Weatheroot" A quick description might not be bad here. Is it a desert? A jungle? What lies ahead of him? I'm fairly certain Garek contemplates what's awaiting him at Weatheroot too!

    12:1 "anyways, weren't they?" I'm fairly sure you mean "there" instead of "they".

    12:1-2 "Still had an endgame. Still had something that he had to do." Incomplete sentences and I think it's "end game". Also, SO not fair that you aren't dropping much in the way of hints on what this goal is. D:

    (Long post btw)

  6. 14:1 Previous paragraph had someone running and this one has him hugging and talking. Running up a dock should at least tire an old man out a bit. :P

    14:1 "I'm sorry, child. I'm so sorry." When using the word "child" as a name, you need to capitalize it ;)

    15-16:1 The use of the words "finally said" in both sense feels a little awkward when read. Perhaps changing the order of speech and action or altering one of the lines so as not to sound repetitive in word might help.

    16:1 Parts of text with speech such as this paragraph should have the unspoken parts where a natural break occurs in what the character should say. Now, if Cadeus is choked up after the first bit, it makes sense, although you don't mention him being emotional. Try moving the unspoken section of this line back to after "leave.".

    17:1 No emotional responses speaking of whoever "they" are? Assuming you're referring to his parents, shouldn't there be some form of emotional bond to them? Why not? Was it so long ago that he considers Cadeus his only real parent?

    18:1 The use of "paladin" is as a name, so should be capitalized :P

    18:1 "cargo is secure, we're casting" You'll need to insert an "and" at the coma or replacing the coma with a period or semicolon.

    19:1 Does Garek say this straight in Cadeus' face? Does he turn to respond to the sailor? A little uncertain what direction Garek is facing at this point.

    19:4 "said, before he leaned" There's no need for a coma here.

    20:2 The cargo ship would be "heading" to Weatheroot. Unless it's part of a convoy, of which case it could be leading the other ships there.

    There are a great deal of names of factions and towns in your story that I have no background on at the end of this part--I'm sure that will be duly rectified, of course. The ability to see the auras surrounding people is a fairly interesting ability I'll assume is from learning how to wield a magical component referred to as "the Light". There was no mention of the ocean, so I could safely assume the ship may be on a river as oppose to in a bay. The story is quite amazing and I do like how stoic Garek is acting, although I don't know if he is merely acting so or not.



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