Once Upon A Tower

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She was called a Femme Fatale, which was a remarkably exact, if misleading, description. She did not seduce men. She killed them. She also happened to be the princess's lady-in-waiting, another exactly deceptive title. She was a lady and she waited. Mostly in the shadows, for danger to appear.

In other words, Katherine was a guard on stiletto heels - and if you believed at least that to be less than literal in meaning, you would be in a world of trouble. For there was nothing metaphorical whatsoever in Katherine. It had been said that her hair was as dark as a raven's plumage - and once she had compared it to find that it was of that precise nuance as well. Men had told her that her eyes shone like stars, which she'd tested by looking into a lake at night - and seeing her hair as a patch of darkness and her eyes exactly like two stars. Her lovers had said her lips were honey-sweet and she had confessed to eating more honey than she should have. So the fact that she was called a guard on stiletto heels meant that you should beware - although blunted by walking, those heels could still pierce through a man's chest.

At the moment she was listening to the princess with a schooled expression. Katherine was not especially interested in what Bellatrix had to say, because it contained much poetry and philosophy. But the bedridden woman needed her audience - and her faithful guard was, what else? faithful and willing to oblige. Katherine was literally the only one who would listen these days. Locked up in her tower, hidden away behind bars, sick and lonely, the princess looked pitifully weak.

"Indeed, I shall die," Bella murmured. "It is a fate that neither you, nor I can hold back. And they'll place me in my bridal gown and say I am God's bride. There are worse men to be married to, I suppose. If I were a worthier woman than I am, I would say that there is none better."

"Must you die?" Katherine asked. She couldn't see a reason why a cure couldn't be found. Surely, with some help from Bellatrix's father's vaults of gold...

"Yes. Indeed I must. I am sure of that. Do I not look it, dear? My cheeks are hollowed, my skin is pale. Look at my hands!" She rose one, studying it almost with wonder. "How thin I have grown! I shall become a ghost before I give my last breath and pass through the bars on my cell, float down the stairs carried by a single gust of wind."

Katherine did not venture to say that no man could float while still alive, no matter how light, although it might have amused Bella, who found her literal-mindedness charming. She did not explain that it was hardly possible for the princess to get up and leave in her state, which would have made her bow her head in resignation. She did not add that there was no wind, nor now, nor ever, down the stairs, since it would have depressed the princess, who liked romantic things like breezes and drafts for a reason Katherine never understood. And most of all, she did not remark that she felt helpless, which was self-evident.

"They say ideas are forever," Bella continued. "They say that they travel from one age to another. They say nothing we think, nothing we say is new, but has been thought and said before and we only echo that, each word of ours a knot bringing together old things and making them new. Perhaps it's true of us, of our souls - nothing that we feel is new, we are not new, but we are knots of what has been before, raveled and unraveled as we are born and as we die."

"I am afraid I don't quite grasp your meaning," Katherine said.

Bella opened her mouth to explain, then closed it, pondering for a long time. "I am saying that I am afraid to die," she answered, in the end. "And find comfort in pretty theories. I wave them around and try to cover my demise with them. You would never do that. You open your eyes widely, you do not fear to see the world as it is. They tell me that if I had had to work with my arms and legs, if I had played sports, I would not have harmed myself so much by thinking. That my body would have been stronger, that my mind should have been more... adequate. Why was I not a proper princess? Why am I so different from the rest of the ladies in this world?"

"I find you plenty adequate," a boy's voice was rang through her cell. "Indeed, I should find you as inadequate as I find the rest of your family if you were any different."

Bella looked up. "Those eyes!" she said, in awe. "A child!"

"So they all think," the 11 year-old with the emerald green eyes said from outside the bars. His all too serious face brightened up with a smile. "You looked for me in the wrong place, Bella dear."

"No wonder! How you have... ah... what is the antonym of 'grown'?"

"Actually," Katherine said, coolly, not very pleased at having been taken by surprise. "I would not say 'no wonder'. I, for one, am quite shocked."

"Yes, I can observe that," the boy replied. He measured Katherine up and down, considering her with the wariness he usually showed her. "Bella. Explain to me why you are locked up in a tower, with a guard to protect you."

"I fell in love with the wrong man," she answered, then gave him a rare ironic smile. "I dare say they fear you. My dearest is here to protect me."

"Are you going to attack me?" the boy asked of the guard, his penetrating gaze piercing through Katherine in a way that no 11 year-old's should be capable of doing. His assurance was not that of a cocky child, but of a minister standing tall in his seat. More precisely, of the minister that Katherine was the most familiar to, an individual whose projected assurance grew in direct proportion to his immoral deeds. Katherine could make that minister look very certain of himself, indeed. And the boy looked as certain as she could ever make the minister look.

"I was ordered to defend her against enemies and against running away with a certain grown man," she offered. "Such a small boy as you can be no threat, if he is a friend."


He slid in between the bars, possibly making them bend ever so slightly to let him through - not that they weren't spaced off before. Nobody should expect children to attack a tower, the guard thought. So they didn't bother wasting resources to make cells children-proof.

"You are indeed beyond comprehension at times," Bella said. "I do not know how you have managed to become a child again, but I can say it must be no less than a miracle. To change your appearance, that is something I can easily understand; but to be so much smaller, so much younger than what you used to be! It should not be possible."

Katherine looked between the two of them and felt the need to say that, technically, their love was now wrong on a whole different level. She abstained.

"If a thing happens, then it isn't impossible," he said decisively. "The matter was a simple one and it shall become clear once it is explained. Considering how witches are known to transform into black cats occasionally, I merely hunted down one, learned her art, then proceeded to experiment with transforming my body in accordance with the same principles, breaking down the process step by step until I was able to comprehend it well enough to determine its composing magical forces - thus allowing me to transform any part of my body in any such way as I wished. Growing younger and smaller in these circumstances is after that simply a matter of applying this process in the correct way."

Katherine nodded. She could understand that.

Bella smiled. She could recognize the charming magician who had courted her.

"By the same logic, the solution for your disease should exist. If my body can be modified, so can your own. We simply need to discover the right way to do it in the period of time given us. I believe success is well within the realm of possibility. Now, we must go. I do not like towers. Katherine, please carry her. My body is not entirely suited to the task. I assume you are as faithful to her as ever? And as willing to commit high treason for our princess?"

Katherine nodded and picked up her charge. The boy placed the blanket that had been on the bed over them. "I can make the rays of light skip on its surface and - actually, never mind. It will turn you invisible. I can explain the process later."

"I understand," the guard said, her voice sounding slightly muffled from under the blanket. "But what shall the royal family think, sir, when they find us gone?"

The boy turned towards her general direction and beamed as if he really were the age he looked. "Why, that I have had a hand in it, naturally." He turned back towards the bars, went through them, then proceeded to pick the lock. "Unless they are baffled by my use of a hairpin and believe you were spirited away by a common thief..." It clicked open and the guard, carrying Bella, walked outside. "Well. They shall be annoyed that I cannot let their daughter die in peace, I suppose. But I find no wisdom in dying, when one can live, nor one in suffering, when one can cease suffering. They call me a devil for it, but I find that I simply cannot give a damn. Escaping the escapable should be a solemn duty, not a taboo."

Bella leaned her head against Katherine's shoulder and smiled. "The year does not bring about what a single moment might," the princess murmured. "Or so they say. Dearest, you have ruined the poetry of my death, but I don't mind in the least."

They went down the tower's stairs, the boy skipping down two steps at a time in a somewhat dangerous manner. Katherine wondered if his ability to twist his body extended to un-breaking his neck. "I tend to do things like that," he acknowledged. "Now, be quiet. I haven't made you silent."

They moved out of the building, between people who did not pay mind to a single boy walking down streets, choosing the less crowded areas to pass through. He made himself nearly unnoticeable, his certain, mature manner of conduct fading away, letting him blend in more with the much more sedate other people walking next to them. Whether it was magic or not, Katherine didn't know, but it was effective nonetheless. She held Bella securely, but lightly, trying not to harm her by pressing her too hard against her chest. She had never unraveled the secret of the attraction between the two - Bella was a sweet, poetic soul; he was a direct, occasionally haughty man who was much too concerned with reality and truth. Yet contrasts, Katherine supposed, were attracted to each other.

They passed by the gates of the city. The guards paid no attention to the boy, who made exiting the most natural motion in the world. On and on they went, the boy whistling like a child would, leading them to the nearby forest. There, he jumped on a carpet and motioned for them to join him. Katherine stared.

"It flies," he explained. "Horses would have jolted Bella too much. Come on! Up!"

The guard and the princess sat on the carpet, the invisibility blanket still draped over them. When he pulled it over his own head, Katherine realized he had been able to see through it all along. Obviously. And then the boy also turned the carpet invisible. The guard decided she did not think she would much like flying.

"Here we go!"


The boy wizard took his head out from under the blanket. "Prince!" he exclaimed, with some amazement, then added in a more subdued tone. "It's the carpet, isn't it?"

"It's mighty suspicious. Lying around in the middle of the forest where no tea party can admire it. I suppose it would be my duty to challenge you to a duel for my sister." The Prince Sebastian pulled out his sword.

"I find it foolish to engage in dangerous activities without a reason that is worth the possible damage," Mark said, not overly impressed.

"I cannot allow her to fall prey to dark magic."

"None such shall be employed, I assure you."

"I don't trust you."

The wizard decided not to argue about that. "Do not be misled by my body. I have lost none of my strength. And this is all the warning you will receive."

The prince attacked nonetheless, but the emerald-eyed boy jumped away lightly, skipping here and there, calculating, not willing to act before he was certain of his gestures. Bella did not utter a cry, as Katherine had expected, but clung harder to her guard, frightened for both of them, knowing they couldn't both escape unscathed. Katherine slowly put her down.

"What are you doing?" the princess whispered. The guard didn't answer, but removed one of her stiletto-heeled boots, raised the edge of the blanket and, aiming carefully, threw it straight at the prince's thigh, where it pierced through, making him collapse to his knees in pain with a very loud groan that the women dared not call a cry, since it would be almost unmanly.

"Yes," the wizard said, looking towards Katherine with some new-found respect. "That should do it." He clambered up on the carpet, pulled the blanket back over his head and rose the carpet in the air. Katherine smiled to herself. She could live fine with Mark and Bella. After all, she had sworn to protect the princess, not to do it in any specific way the royal family wanted her to...


The prince glared at them murderously from below. He swore that he would become a wizard himself, learn how to turn into a raven, fly after them wherever they went and destroy Mark.

In fact, he eventually did just that. Or rather he just went through the first few stages of that process. He earned an apprenticeship with a witch, paying his way through training that he was unsuited for, letting his hatred and revenge rule him in such a way as to cloud his vision entirely. He learned, indeed, how to become a raven, but not how to become human again. He flew high and low, seeking the three and eventually found them, but was unable to fight them.

It took him awhile to realize that he'd just made himself an endnote in the history of the land and if he were ever to be mentioned, it would be as part of another story entirely.

Bella never found out about his sacrifice, because Mark and Katherine never stopped treating her delicately, even after she healed. Instead, when the Femme Fatale discovered the raven, which had its royal ring around a leg, she brought it to Mark, who deduced what had happened and tied him to a perch to be his personal bird of ill omen. But they would never utter a word to the princess herself, so they could, without any remorse on anybody's side, live happily ever after.
Note: If the site is having bug trouble and the story doesn't show up, try refreshing. If that doesn't work, clicking the 'Download' button on the right should.

Thanks to Less Wrong for mentioning me on his author's profile on! I'm feeling a bit embarrassed now that it isn't really fanfiction, but...

Inspired from ~dinosaurusgede's "Rescuing Bellatrix from Azkaban":

For #DevNews's November contest.

The theme was: "We want you to look at ANY other deviantART work submitted on or after November 1, and make a piece of art based on that. This art can be just some thought you had while looking at that work, or it can be made to be very similar using your own work and styles. Then using the Link System, link to it!" - which of course got me in a referential mood :D


Based, as I've said, on :icondinosaurusgede:'s Rescuing Bellatrix from Azkaban, which is based on Less Wrong's Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality. This is, of course, a fanfiction of the "Harry Potter" series (you don't need a link for that one).

Incidentally, Rescuing Bellatrix from Azkaban has a very Miss Havisham-looking Bella, in my opinion, so that ties in, in my head, with Dickens' "Great Expectations".

And the gloomy mood and 'gonna die'-ness is in the style of Natsume Soseki's short story "First Night", which I happened to be reading lately (in Japanese, which is why it's taking me so long).

The idea of making an original work inspired off a fanart of a fanfic amused me. It's so very ironic, isn't it? Especially since so many people tend to believe (wrongly) that fan art and fan fiction are somehow 'inferior' genres because they aren't 'original' (today 'originality' is a debated concept) or because they have 'lower quality' than 'real' art and literature. True, 99% of fan art/fan fiction is not as good as, say, John Fowles. But then again, neither is 99& of mainstream, 'original' art.

If you want, you can consider this to be in the same universe as my Essence of Lightning.

The ideas tied in knots thing is inspired from the works of philosopher Derrida, who didn't say precisely that, but close enough.

Is that enough linking, mates? :lol:
© 2010 - 2021 TheOtherSarshi
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xlntwtch's avatar
:star::star::star::star::star-half: Overall
:star::star::star::star::star: Vision
:star::star::star::star::star: Originality
:star::star::star::star::star-empty: Technique
:star::star::star::star::star-half: Impact

"Once Upon a Tower"

1. Beginning at the beginning (what better place, eh?) I think the first sentence is a great hook. The second one, though, I would suggest you separate with a period instead of a dash. You use a lot of dashes in this piece and some are appropriate, but here I think you want to keep the 'hook' proceeding at a more surprising and concise manner. "She did not seduce men. She killed them." Do you see any difference? If not, ignore me.

2. Every book I've read about these women uses hyphens for "lady-in-waiting." How about you? You also use a lot of commas. Some are 'worthy' and some are misplaced. Suggest "She was a lady and she waited."
2a. What I do is read a piece aloud to see where I pause and for how long to judge if I need a comman, a period, or a dash.

3. When a dash is used, to my mind it leaves the word "and" a little 'moot.' "In other words, Katherine was a guard on stiletto heels - if you believe at least that to be less..." See what I mean?

4. Read it aloud to check those commas.
4a. I didn't even pause for a lot of them. Do you?

5. The question mark in the middle of that one sentence worked really well for me. Good.

6. I also really like the juxtapositions all through this piece. The pragmatism of Katherine and Mark as opposed to Bella's romantic and even gothic POV is great and makes this very interesting indeed.

7. That speech about "ideas" that last forever, tied in different knots, is killer = Really Good.

8. "She abstained." Good for Katherine! So is Mark's "...actually, never mind." Those and more little gems made me laugh.

9. I would also put a hyphen here: "...emerald-eyed boy..."

10. How about "Katherine slowly [put] her down" instead of "...placed her down..."? In English, it sounds like setting a table for dinner.

11. You forgot the 'c' in "...witch..." at the beginning of the last paragraph. Love a "...happily ever after" endings. Great job, OtherSarshi. Your wit is boundless.
TheOtherSarshi's avatar
Oh, hey, most of the issues were grammar/punctuation! Hurray!

I did a horrible thing when I wrote this. I didn't edit :blush:. Hence the plethora of hyphens and commas. My internal speech as I write is full of pauses, apparently; it only occurs to me during a later edit that I may have had too many.

I corrected the stuff you mentioned and a few others besides. It's still not 'cool' enough for me to be entirely objective, but I caught a bit of grammar here and there and removed a hyphen or three and played about with the commas.

The ideas that last forever, tied in different knots is me rephrasing can't-ever-remember-his-first-name Derrida's deconstruction theory. He's a philosopher I haven't gotten around to read yet, but whose ideas seem to be popping up all over the place wherever I go. Except his theory was phrased much more academically. I like integrating random things in what I write, though, so I enjoyed putting post-modernism of all things in a fantasy setting :D

Your liking the juxtapositions = YAY!

xlntwtch's avatar
Your story = :iconlovespinplz:
Let me know when it's 'cooled off' and you think it's ready.
Then I'll suggest it a couple of places, if you don't mind.
(After I see where you might have it already, of course.)
You = :iconcopterglomp1plz::iconcopterglomp2plz:
TheOtherSarshi's avatar

Thank you. *gets glomped* :hug:
Asssitant-Scientist's avatar
Now I know why this is the first fanfiction listed on the HPMoR site. Less Wrong knows how to gather his fanfiction and you really know how to write it.
I really did not think of Bellatrix as the poetic type, but...hmm...I could see that happening. I don't really have any other comments, since your execution seemed really good, as well as the thoughts and dialogue, which kept Harry's...sorry, Mark's character intact.
addisonphill's avatar
What exactly is Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality? I'm not normally into fanatics but this one looks interesting. What is it about?
bigjeff5's avatar
Loved it, I was hoping for a lot more actually, heh.

Less Wrong's Harry Potter shows through very clearly, and Bella is a convincing version of Bellatrix had she not been twisted by Voldemort.

The association with Less Wrong's story was also very clear without being precisely the same in any way, and even being very different in almost every way.

I enjoyed it.
TheOtherSarshi's avatar
:hug: Thanks for the comment. I'm afraid that this is all I had planned for "Once Upon A Tower", so no sequel is likely to happen. But Less Wrong is so inspiring... Maybe more fanfics of his fanfic will happen at some point of time ;)
quintopia's avatar
Consider this a mini-critique, since I can't afford a premium membership:

1) Someone suddenly saying "Mark" out of nowhere is really confusing, especially since we don't know of any character with that name when it is said. You don't have to mention his name before this moment if you concede to the reader that they shouldn't be expected to know that. Possible revision:

"Mark!" said a very familiar male voice. It wasn't a question. The boy wizard knew only one man who could have seen through his youthful disguise well enough to name him without any hesitation. Mark took his head out from under from under the blanket and looked the man right in the eye. "Prince," he replied coldly.

2) The ending could be made much more powerful if you don't try to summarize the rest of Prince's life in three sentences. First, go into more detail about what is going through Mark's head as he dances between killing Bella's brother in front of her and avoiding getting killed himself, and what is going through Katherine's head as she works out her own particular solution to this quandary. This way you can build to a proper dramatic climax:

Katherine knew that Mark would have no trouble ending this himself if he wanted to. What she was watching reminded her somewhat of a cat carrying a live mouse around by its tail, while the mouse, swinging back and forth, lashed out ineffectually with its tiny claws and teeth. But if Prince managed to get in a lucky strike, Mark might overreact to disastrous consequences. If he wasn't going to end it the gentle way, she would have to provide her own unique skills to the matter. She laid Bella gently down on the carpet beside her, then unclipped the stiletto from one of her high-heeled boots. Balancing it perfectly in her hand, she mentally rehearsed the motion she had made with such ease so many times in practice.
At the precise moment when Prince was facing her direction, raising his sword high for a leaping momentum attack, she leapt to her feet and cast the blanket aside, screaming. The distraction worked. Prince froze in place, his eyes wide at her sudden appearance. Her arm blurred through the air. He heard her hand slap against her thigh as the same moment a sudden sharp pain pierced his lower left leg. He gasped as he collapsed to the ground in pain. A unmanly cry of pain escaped his lips, and restraained herself from grinning sadistically in satisfaction.

When the conflict is resolved so dramatically, the raven story can be told as an epilogue:

Years later, Bella, nearly fully recovered, was walking in the woods when she came upon a wounded raven lying on the ground with the royal ring encircling its leg. She carefully scooped up the bird and carried it back to the house to show to her husband.
"This looks just like the ring my brother used to wear!" she said. "He must be nearby! He's hurt this raven and left it here as a message!"
"No worries, dear," consoled Mark. "I have just gotten a message that your brother is on an extended journey in the far north and could not possibly have gotten here so quickly. I have friends watching him at all times. This bird is probably a royal pet that escaped, and the resemblance of the ring to the one your brother wore is purely coincidental. I think you should do whatever you can to heal this bird's wounds and, perhaps, someday it will return to its rightful owners."
Later, while Bella was napping, Katherine, who had overheard this exchange, brought it up. "You were lying to her. I would know if you were using spies. You have no idea where her brother is."
"On the contrary," Mark smiled. "A certain witch friend of mine told me some time ago that she had taught, against her better judgment, a rather angry young man how to transfigure into a raven."
He strode over to the box in which the bird lay with a splint tied to its wing. "The man, she said, was so rash that he completely ignored her warning that he could not return to human form again while he still held vengeance in his heart."
He bent over and peered into the pitiful bird's eyes.
"And I think you will be with us for quite some time, won't you?"

And now I feel like I'm completely rewriting your story and I don't really want to do that, so let me just summarize by saying that you should follow the old writing maxim wherever possible: Show, don't tell.
TheOtherSarshi's avatar
Hi! Thanks for the comments!

May I make a remark on the style in them, first? ^_^

I've had a few good years of practice writing, so I've grown a lot of skins of all sorts and have grains of salt all around me. I've also beta-ed for others every once in awhile. In other words, I really appreciate your comment and take your suggestions for what they are and am considering them as I do all comments. (I'll tell you what I'm considering just a bit later on)

However, re-writing something a person wrote is an editorial taboo. There are a few reasons why this is so:

1. It's one of the most intrusive ways of commenting and as such can be offensive.
2. The editor's style and ideas can differ greatly from the author's style and ideas. If the author's perfectly relaxed, he can just say, 'well, whatever'. If he's got a huge ego, he'll say 'what does the editor know? He doesn't understand!!!' And if he's insecure, he can be swayed in a direction which doesn't really suit him.
3. Somebody once said that when people tell you something isn't quite right, they are quite often correct; but when people tell you why it is so, they are quite often incorrect. In your vision of the story, you might try to twitch things the way they also don't work. The idea is to point out what the story lacks, so the author can fix it.
4. The author generally needs the practice/wants to do it himself, when just told of the weak points.

I have a brilliant editor friend who throws her palms open and refuses to take pens shoved at her when told to write a better variant. That's not how it works. A word here and there, a rephrasing of something to sound less awkward, that's within limits, but putting in ideas, writing new sentences, it's taboo. My 16 year-old self would have been wailing and shoving things around by now and screaming she wasn't understood and feeling obligated to change things that way. 6 years later, I'm doing none of those, but feeling slightly awkward and a bit worried, because you rewrote so much with the best intentions and here I am, knowing I should say these things to you and hoping you won't be offended.

Now, to the actual content of the comment:

1) Yes, the reader wasn't supposed to know his name in advance. I like the speculation - we already know Katherine and Bella's names, so how could the mighty boy wizard be named? I thought it becomes quite clear when the wizard replies to the name that it was his name. And the prince didn't recognize him under the layers of disguises, but because there was a magical carpet in the middle of nowhere and a boy becoming invisible. If I had a sister nearly kidnapped by a wizard, my mind would turn to him instantly on those signs, too. I'll see on a later edit if I need to make anything clearer, but this stays pretty much as it is. Except, perhaps, more pointers to the subtext.

2) He has no problems killing Bella's brother in front of her. He's contemplating how to best go about things. Katherine doesn't think overly much in general - she's not the analyser of the group. She throws the stiletto because she's the guard and guards guard, so she guards.

About your version:

"Katherine knew that Mark would have no trouble ending this himself if he wanted to. What she was watching reminded her somewhat of a cat carrying a live mouse around by its tail, while the mouse, swinging back and forth, lashed out ineffectually with its tiny claws and teeth." - She doesn't do metaphors. "But if Prince managed to get in a lucky strike, Mark might overreact to disastrous consequences."Might he? I'm rather under the impression that he's not the overreacting type. "If he wasn't going to end it the gentle way, she would have to provide her own unique skills to the matter."She's much more straightforward than that. "She laid Bella gently down on the carpet beside her, then unclipped the stiletto from one of her high-heeled boots. Balancing it perfectly in her hand, she mentally rehearsed the motion she had made with such ease so many times in practice."Kind of clichéd.

"At the precise moment when Prince"why do you keep calling him Prince? He's a prince. Not a prince called Prince. "was facing her direction, raising his sword high for a leaping momentum attack, she leapt to her feet and cast the blanket aside, screaming."Why the dramatism? Why leap? Why scream? What makes Katherine Katherine is her straightforward, no-nonsense attitude. She'd probably watch screaming, battling heroes around her and wrap nooses around their necks quietly, pulling the string until they died "The distraction worked. Prince froze in place, his eyes wide at her sudden appearance."I like to think that she may or may not have been intending to go for the leg. *dark, evil chuckle* It depends on how much she hated him. As a man. "Her arm blurred through the air. He heard her hand slap against her thigh"Why? "as the same moment a sudden sharp pain pierced his lower left leg."you've switched POV on me suddenly. This was all about Katherine. How does she know what sort of pain he feels? "He gasped as he collapsed to the ground in pain. A unmanly cry of pain escaped his lips,"awww, you removed the fun from my phrasing "and restraained herself from grinning sadistically in satisfaction."she may give a small smirk, if she must; she'd have definitely given a small smirk had she hit his crotch, as may or may not have been her original intention.

3) Nah. Bella's poetic, not silly. And she's never meant to find out about the raven being her brother at all. Mark wouldn't lie to her, I think, but just say something vague. Katherine would never accuse him of lying, even if he were, because it isn't her place. She would make some vague reference to honesty, if needs be. The prince's issue is not that he can't become human again with vengeance in his heart, but rather that he ran off to get his vengeance before he learned how to turn back. It's a lot more idiotic of him, but people can be like that.

I actually do show, not tell, a lot of things O_o The epilogue is, in the true tradition of fairy tales, a fast forward through everything that isn't very relevant, saying what happened to the less important characters, if any remained. So it stays pretty much the way it is.

I'm sorry to have to tear your comments apart like that, but they don't really fit in with my story - the motivations are different, the characters are different, the atmosphere is different.

But thank you so much for taking the time to write such a huge comment, anyway! I really appreciate it and am looking at it as a sort of fan fiction :) The fan fiction of the original work based on the fan art of the fan fiction. It's nice.
quintopia's avatar
Yeah, I wasn't trying to say that those excerpts were actually how your story should /be/, just illustrations of one potential way to improve the things that seemed like they could be improved. I didn't feel like I could make the points I wanted to make without illustrating them somehow, and ... I guess I got a little carried away.

But yeah, it took me several rereads to realize that "Mark" was a name (rather than someone indicating that someone should pay attention to something or remember something) and that it was being said by someone new.

And the climax could be made more climactic, however you would have chosen to do it, by expanding the details of it somewhat and using it as an opportunity to expand on characterization.

And if you are happy with the epilogue, then I won't say another word about it. I just felt like the irony of the prince's fate could have had a stronger impact if it were reordered somewhat.

I wouldn't even be saying all this much if it wasn't clear you were very open to constructive criticism. I could tell by your comments here already that you wouldn't take offense at my examples.
TheOtherSarshi's avatar
Oh. Oh!

Sorry about the comment, then. :blush: I've actually had an editor who was trying to impose passages on me (it wasn't pretty) and I know how well-intended and harmful they can be.

I'll definitely work on the 'Mark' then and tweak the climax.
Cloud-Dragonz's avatar
I don't usually read written art on da, this is an exception though sublimely done!
TheOtherSarshi's avatar
Thank you so much! :D
dinosaurusgede's avatar
WOW, brilliant!! Interesting, Bella as a princess.Didn't see that coming. Thank you for using my fanart for this beautiful fiction. I'm glad it inspires you
TheOtherSarshi's avatar
:hug: I'm so happy you like it! And thank you for the wonderful fanart! :D
KitsuneDragonheartLo's avatar
Another brilliant one :hug:

I don't think he could pickpocket the lock, though. Unless it had pockets. Or a purse, then it could have pursed it :D
TheOtherSarshi's avatar

Oops. *runs off to fix that*
EliezerYudkowsky's avatar
My fanfiction has fanfiction! Just like I always dreamed! YAY!
TheOtherSarshi's avatar
(the ellipsis stood for a moment of realization there)
TheOtherSarshi's avatar
Whoa! Word gets out very quickly, doesn't it? I was going to tell you about it myself after the first edit (which just happened). I guess somebody must have been quicker than that.


You're reading my fanfic of your fanfic! Just like I've dreamed for the past day, since I started writing it! YAY!
anonymous's avatar
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