Reviews for Roused
Unther chapter 114 . 6/30
Oh, so most goons can't talk?

Now I'm having images of that warg rider from that scene during the evacuation to Helm's Deep.

The plot thickens. We still don't know the goon queen's motivation, or if she really has any per se. Oh, and why was the dying goon so forthcoming with information? It kind of felt like he spilled his guts a bit too easily.

Um...don't they need a battle plan first? And maybe some siege weapons?

Considering that they just shattered 5K, 1500 doesn't sound so bad to me.

Did you write the old man's song? Oh, there it is in your note. Cool! Does it lose much in translation?

Cute bit with the song. I'm kind of partial to the March of Cambreadth.
Unther chapter 113 . 6/30
"THE" big raid? (Not to be confused with THE Red Plague.) I figured they'd be expecting A raid, because the goons have been doing this for, what, two weeks at this point?

5K goons! Whew! I have images of the Uruk-hai marching on Helm's Deep, or the orcs disgorging through the Black Gate to face the allied armies of Gondor.

So Phillip et al hold the high ground, right? With the goons attacking uphill, one would think things wouldn't go so well for them. And how many were felled in the first crossbow volley?

Keep in mind that in battle, a horse is only useful when in motion. If it stops, it's...well, not quite useless, but near enough.

Wait...Phillip charges, presumably downhill and through the goon ranks and out the other side. Then he reforms and charges again, but uphill?

Nice bit of action! I'd have loved to have seen more detail because that helps draw me into what's happening.
Unther chapter 112 . 6/25
Oh, dear. That chapter title just by itself screamed, "More angst!"

Usually, it's my posterior that starts hurting if I sit in the same spot for a while. Oddly, sometimes my knees, depending on the height of the chair and the angle of my lower legs. That's a good detail about the itching, one that I think a lot of writers overlook.

Staying covered...whoa, that's going to be twitchy for a while.

A quick nap? I've never really been much of a nap person, even as a kid. Except for when I was in Egypt-they actually TOLD us to take an early-afternoon nap.

Is it Rapunzel lying limply on the bed while talking? That's kind of how it reads.
"A light breeze...lazily." Your participles are dangling.

Wow, those seamstresses have been busy!

"To put myself in danger is to betray them." Whoa. That's heavy.

Knowledge of something not changing how one feels about it... ain't it just like that?

Should be, "...a much worse betrayal..."

The hug intervals...wow, that's overwhelming! Rapunzel's insecurities are a lot like Elsa's.
Boy, Rapunzel has issues! New ways of doing it wrong...dang, she just doesn't give herself a break. Or maybe she just hasn't learned balance yet.

"...braided it back together..." Nice wording!

"I want to love them most." Nice.

Should be, "...better than Mother." 'Than' is a comparison, 'then' is a sequence term.

She wants to FIX the goons?

Simpler back in the tower...ja, I've had Rapunzel say the very same thing.

Where did Aurora learn about all those different types of love, when she's been cooped up and isolated just as much as Rapunzel?

Z?

That's adorable. But-and while I know better-it could very easily read as slash. Not sure what one could do about that.

I liked your Author's Notes for this chapter. There was an uproar over Merida's orientation? Huh? But I do see what you mean about the piece not having a whole lot of action.
Unther chapter 111 . 6/24
I had some conflicting feelings about the opening line. At first, I suddenly had images of the statues at the Falls of Roros, or the edifices of the Dwarf Lords at the Lonely Mountain, or the great statuary on Asgard in "Thor." Then it contracted when I learned the Four Heroes were those who'd died defending the Princesses.

Probably should be, "...what fine people they had been..." Because they're dead.

"...world of tears in a blaze of glory and honor." Nice wording!

Should be, "...way to die than to..."

"The princesses...at this time." There's something awkward about this sentence. It's almost, but not quite, clear who's doing the weeping or the chanting.

"...more to life than just existing." Nice wording! Deep, too.

"Rapunzel's grief...able to tell anyone." Wow, that's heartbreaking. Sure, we all deal with death in different ways, but still. More heavy stuff.

"...wasn't correct or proper, but it was the right way..." Whoa. But that's totally Rapunzel.

"sadness for the fallen and guilt for the living." Whew! No kidding.

Interesting that you capitalize 'After.' I've encountered that sort of thing in apocalypitic literature in reference to whatever event it is that sets off that particular apocalypse.

Not scared anymore. Huh.

This was a pretty dense chapter! It was short, but man, the amount of heavy emotional, philosophical, and psychological stuff in there is just staggering!

I'm reminded of something a coworker told me once. I think I've mentioned it before, but it's relevant here, so I'll repeat it. He said that the reason we have such a hard time dealing with death is that it was never supposed to happen to us. So we don't really have a very good mechanism for it. The pain heals, leaves scars, and we figure out how to just adapt and move on.
Unther chapter 110 . 6/21
Animal speak? Oh, that's hilarious!

Not on purpose? Whoa. That could be tense. (Kind of like how I have Alexis inadvertently blurt out a word of Khantushakal here and there.)

"In chameleon, she's been..." I figure this is an explanation, but it isn't quite punctuated like one.

The round room...somehow I found that to be humorous. It's an interesting point, though.

All of a sudden, Leah knows songbird? That's kind of...rushed. Rebecca speaking chameleon makes sense, particularly since you explained that. But language is very complex and unless the character has some magical ability (like the all-speaking I invented in my HMC-verse), they're not going to just suddenly be able to speak an entire language just like that.

In human? I'd have said whichever language we're meant to understand people use in that part of the world.

I do that, too: blurting something out in some language other than English. I sometimes even use two or more different languages in the same sentence. It amuses my wife.

There could have been more to this. The different sounds of the different animal languages, the different syntax, that sort of thing. That could be very interesting.
Unther chapter 109 . 6/21
I guess this scene takes place in a sort of war room? That should be clearer at the opening, which means rephrasing the first few sentences.

Okay, the path is interesting, and certainly represents a strategic back door, but I felt like the kings overreacted. Aside from the obvious, they don't know where it goes or what they'd find there. They need some recon.

I suppose Stefan is saying all that stuff to Leonard, but it's not clear. It's also a bit off-topic, isn't it?

Leonard's reply is run-on. But he makes a good point: the result of their respective daughters' absences is more or less the same.

Ah, right...Rapunzel is a couple of years older than Aurora.

And the arranged marriage thing...how many writers have that sort of thing pop up in their own versions of the stories?

They should go play siege weapon bocce when they're done.
Unther chapter 108 . 6/21
So, this Miles Deekins...he's an ancestor of one Ichabod Crane? As a bit of an aside, isn't that an English name?

...based on the Queen's message. Okay, I think I know what you mean-that he deduced which maps would be needed-but that sounds kind of off the way it's worded.

I love maps, just so you know! :-) I once drew a series of topographic maps of a fictional country that I'd contrived-it was a lot of fun-I still have them kicking around somewhere, I think.

Should probably be, "...know where you lived." Present tense, because she still knows where she lived.

Kind of an Isle de Muerta sort of thing, eh? It cannot be found except by those who already know where it is!
Or:
"It ain't on the map."
"Trust me, it's there."

"From what they found...from the goons." This is kind of a fragment and it doesn't make much sense.

They really marked up a map like that? I'm a little surprised, since maps were VERY difficult to make back then, at least in terms of labor...and probably materials, too, since one generally needed larger-than-average parchments.

I'd change "...would stop..." to the simple past tense, since these are things she's doing while the story unfolds, not something she habitually did in some other time prior to the story.

Should be, "...her finger past..."

Ah, yes, the ol' hiding something in plain sight or under someone's nose ploy.

Missing paths...that doesn't surprise me, either. Deer paths, foot paths, even today's USGS topo trail maps don't show everything and I'm pretty sure every hike I've taken has involved some path or other that wasn't on the map, and/or a trail that wasn't where the map said it was supposed to be.

Should be, "...hand drew in..."

He knew to bring a map of the world?

Because of certain logistical considerations, I think the scene might work better if the Princess were to visit the cartographer's lair. Among other things, he could lay hand on any map in question at anyone's request. I liked this chapter...it felt fun, though maybe that's just me and my thing for maps.
Unther chapter 107 . 6/16
I like the detail. But the second sentence of the second paragraph is kind of a fragment. I typically write out "five thousand" because the character actually articulates those words. That's 5K goons, right?

Maybe the detail of ammunition might be better discussed earlier, during a discussion about logistics.

But do those knights actually know how to fight in their armor?

Goons grabbing people to feed to the queen...ick! "In his belly you will find a new definition of pain and suffering as you are slowly digested over a thousand years."

That kind of hasty defense can be effective, though. There's a real-world example of a young woman in India who killed hundreds of the enemy with a sturdy stick in just that way, a sort of lethal whack-a-mole. The story's on Rejected Princesses.

Ja, cavalry need to be moving in order to be really effective. At some points in history, soldiers didn't necessarily even fight from horseback. They used the horse as a rapid transport, then dismounted to do the fighting.

He wants the goons to run away? I thought the idea was to slaughter them all.

That bit about the change in perception of Eugene...to me, that looks like an opportunity for a campfire scene with a few of the enlisted men having a discussion about that.

More of those logistical problems. That's good for the story, I think.

Nice plan...I like it.
Unther chapter 106 . 6/15
I've completely lost track of how many times I've had a stitch in my side from sudden exertion. Yet do we ever see characters do that in movies, or even in books? Hardly ever. That's a bit of realism I too often forget...along with smells.
The second mention of stairs is redundant and the sentence would work just as well without it.

It might be a good idea to mention just what "zis" is. At first, I'd thought it was a message, given the urgency of the maid's behavior. But I was also wondering why a message would be arriving at a library. So it's a book, which makes sense, but that raises the question, do they have interlibrary loan?
Why does the maid address the Queen as mi'lady, and not your Majesty?

There's that word "gotten" again.

Ah, yes, that maid outfit. I seem to recall that it was a bit, shall we say, unfortunate?

Would Rapunzel actually use the word 'squee,' or would she simply squee? I'm pretty sure that word is of very recent origin.
"...went Rapunzel." I'm pretty sure using "go" in place of "say" is a modern colloquialism and shouldn't be used in written prose, unless it's part of dialogue.
The grabbing gestures are funny!

I notice you spell it "Flannigan," whereas I hear "Flinnagan."

A sewing book being fun and for Aurora's reasons...huh. I hadn't thought about it that way. Then again, I'm a straight guy, so...

I've also lost count of the number of times I've not noticed hunger because I've been too focused on whatever it was I was doing.

All that about questions...whew! That's rough. Kind of exciting, though, at least for them.

Rebecca worries because Rapunzel reads so fast? Gee, most parents I know would be overjoyed if their kids were to devour books the way Rapunzel does.

"I thought I was going to fall over, it was so big!" LOL!

"...blew me away..." That's another modernism, if I'm not mistaken.
I love how she describes her responses to the town library, the atlas, and the Royal Library.

A nice, intimate chapter, without so much tension as some of the previous ones, and full of cute moments.
Unther chapter 105 . 6/13
Ah, back to the front, eh?

At first, I didn't know who was speaking in the opening dialogue. I always find it a little disorienting and probably because I don't know which character's voice to use in my head while I'm reading.
And there's that word 'get.' Ja, it's a Germanic word. Ja, we have that word 'begat' that you probably know from the KJV. It still sounds a bit sloppy to me. Also, I'm not sure it used to mean 'become,' as it does in this instance. This is also another instance in which you should avoid the passive voice...not sure why, it just feels off.

Sounds like they stand a good chance of being overrun before all their reinforcements arrive. Now...how many countries are sending help? And why? I wasn't aware chariots were ever a thing in European warfare.

Stores? Do you mean supplies?
Captain Taygon...the way it reads, you're suggesting that being with Eugene et al is a well-deserved vacation.

"...nowhere to go, somehow..." Should be two sentences. Why is that particular location the best place to stop the goons from overrunning the world?

Heh. The ship's name is 'Star Enterprise,' but I read 'Starship Enterprise.' I'm such a nerd. Ja, I wouldn't be terribly inclined to take the threat seriously either.

Stefan's description of the food situation sounds like something straight out of an apocalyptic scenario.

They know the ships are from Corona just from sail being sighted?

"...get here." I think 'arrive' would be better.

What's the passenger capacity of a ship? Ja, I guess it depends on the class of ship, but still.

Evacuating the Princesses is an interesting idea.

And you switched to the present tense there at the end.
Unther chapter 104 . 6/12
Should be, "...maid who will be..."

Should be, "...eagle takes off..." I almost remember an eagle. Otherwise, it seems kind of sudden.

The comma in "The fathers...on them." should be between 'sleep' and 'worry,' not between 'world' and 'weighs.'

I love how even the animals are on guard duty. Kind of feels Narnia-esque. You could build on that.

You mean goons actually bed down for the night? I guess they're like, "We ain't had nothin' but maggotty bread for three stinking days!"

It almost sounds like the goon queen has taken up Maleficent's place as ruler of the goons.

You make Maleficent's staff seem like Sauron's One Ring.

Gargoyles, eh? I though those were usually good guys.

I rather liked the smoothness of this chapter. It's a little like a Class-II rapid in a river: not the "holy s**t" of a Class-IV, but more moving than the calm or Class-I of the last several chapters. A little more than a breather chapter, I guess you could say. Or an overview/things-thus-far. It reminds us of all the stuff that's happening at the moment.

That's a good question about the staff.
Unther chapter 103 . 6/12
At first, it's unclear who "they" are. A sedan chair...those are salvaged from the Honda Accord in which the Israelites travelled through the desert, right?
"...they had introduced them..." I think you mean the servants and the Princesses, but the sentence is kind of awkward.

The two occurrences of "wear" feel redundant. At first, I was expecting something about gowns, but then we move on to crowns. So if the title of the chapter is "Coronation," why we start out talking about mourning attire in the first place?

"Others could take it off, but she could not." That's an interesting commentary on the burden of the Crown and of authority in general. It's something we didn't quite understand until we joined the SCA. It's quite common for SCA nobility to remove their crowns, but still be "Your Majesty/Highness/Excellency/etc." and be unable to escape it at any hour of any day at any event.

"...didn't know it was enchanted." So the spell's still there?

The pillow with the cloth...the way it reads, the cloth could be covering just the pillow, or be over the crown, too. I thought the latter, and it turned out I was right. But aren't both crowns hidden?

Love Rapunzel's commentary on the day she first encountered her own coronet. I had visions of her noticing some bit of dirt or something and using her own saliva to clean it right in front of everyone, completely oblivious to the...er...looks of askanceness. I also hadn't thought much about the visual contrast between the gold in the crown and the hair on which it rests, but it's a very good point.

Rapunzel putting her crown on and taking it off again while talking...you might try to find some way of saying that while she's doing it...work it in between her dialogue. I think it would feel more organic and show-don't-tell that way.

Dumb used to mean mute. At some point, it became equated with stupidity, but I think that was a later development.

Why is Aurora's covered with a purple cloth? That is, why purple? I don't recall that being an important heraldic tincture for her realm.

"...red, red lip." Okay, I know this is a thing in fairy tales. But how many people have you seen with truly red lips? I'm pretty sure I can count that on one hand without having to use any fingers.

"...just an object..." It's interesting the power symbols have.

That's a good question: IS the magic embedded in the crown? Or is the spell on her?

Aurora is even having a hard time talking about it...that's interesting.

Clearly it's removable. I'd been wondering about that as I read this chapter because obviously it came off before.
Unther chapter 102 . 5/29
Forest name...that's an interesting idea.

Ja, the whole thing about names is a big deal in both SB and T.

I do like the idea of trying to braid the names together.

Holy son-of-a-motherless-goat, that's a long name! What's the background behind Rapunzel's names?
Unther chapter 101 . 5/29
For some reason, I read, "...the Mermaid" in the chapter title. Go fiture.

I suppose simply calling her "the red-haired maid" is less twitchy than I'd mentioned before if we're using one of the Royals' POV. That's because they probably wouldn't know the names of most of their lower-level staff. Not if we're in historical context, anyway.

Their feet throb after having been sitting for a while...is that because of blood flow? Although I find that sitting tends to restrict blood flow in my legs, and has the effect of at least making my feet cold.

"Hi?" That sounds intrusively modern to me.

I love the birds in this scene. It's cute. Real-world note: hummingbirds tend to be very territorial, at least the males do, in some species more than others; are there hummingbirds in Europe?

Good note about the practice of lying in state.

Although I'm unsure how often bodies were actually returned over distance. Certainly for nobility. But moving a body like that was rarely done. Even as late as WWII, bodies were seldom shipped home.

Why did the Princesses have to go inside to discuss that? It would have made sense if it were sensitive information.
Unther chapter 100 . 5/15
Flora and Fauna gasp...is that for dramatic effect, or because they recognize that Merryweather is telling Aurora's own story to her?

Ja, that does seem like an odd story. But I guess it's the sort one might expect from the three of them telling it in committee.

Besides the obvious connection to SB, is this based on anything else in particular? Because it has development potential.
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