|Reviews for Roused|
| Unther chapter 10 . 4/9
As before, are the italics supposed to imply a dead-pan tone to her internal monologue?
The first sentence doesn't make much sense. It looks like you have two half-finished thoughts crammed together and I'm not sure what you mean.
"I am a bad girl." Wait, she blames herself, too, now? Huh.
So that I'm remembering correctly, the Pain is her word for her identity crisis and the total confusion and disorientation that comes with it, plus her feelings of betrayal on top of that, right?
"...let things go back to the way they were." Is that even possible? I suppose I shouldn't expect that wish to make sense, since it's so emotion-driven. But, still, I doubt there's any going back, not remotely.
Is it that the pink dress is form-fitting, or is there some more psychological effect that makes it seem tighter than it really is? Also odd that Maleficent has such a hold on her, as though she's been hypnotized.
I really can feel her despair in her monologue. It's almost painful.
Okay, that was a bit weird. Is the crown on her head really morphing, or is she imagining that? And then you change POV without warning. I like how you tell part of the story from another character's POV, but I think you should devote an entire chapter to that, instead of just one paragraph.
| Unther chapter 9 . 4/9
It took me a moment to realize that the cry of "wolf" was being made by Aurora's animal friends. I'd forgotten that you have her able to understand their speech and they hers.
The detail of her "aunts'" sewing ability was at least a nice reference to the fact that they're actually fairies and still have a bit of disconnect with the realm of humans.
I liked your treatment of the wolves' philosophy. They know what they know, but don't seem to have any sort of framework for explaining it. It's as though to them, there's no other way to be than the way they are.
"There was no need to deny..." That's a great explanation. However, it's in the past tense and not from Aurora's POV. Not sure if there's another way to show this from her POV...you might want to ponder that, though, because it's interesting.
Methinks the wolf is deceiving her. Foxes are tricksey, too, though. She's smart, she is.
If you're sticking with Aurora's POV, you should probably not mention the gift of Maleficent. Otherwise, that line is great fairy-tale-speak. I do love how you make her a gymnast, though.
Interesting how at least one of the fairies' first impulse is to go for her wand. Sort of like in Harry Potter.
The wolves can see through the fairies' camouflage...interesting. Do you also mean to imply that the wolf knows she's also the Princess?
You do some more shifting away from Aurora's POV. You might consider retelling it that way, mainly the latter part.
| Unther chapter 8 . 3/28
Even her own face is a lie? Whoa, she's really having some massive identity issues!
Should be "My back aches." Keeping present tense. Why does her back ache, though? I figure she must have been tossing and turning during the nightmare, which I suppose is implied, maybe. Otherwise, it's odd.
I think Father should be capitalized.
"...big lying mirror." Kind of reminds me of Stan Rogers' song "Lies."
They're taking her clothes again...okay, I guess the first time was...when? I suppose I get that she doesn't see the point of all those clothing changes, but I'm unsure whether she's annoyed at what I sense is her view of the pointlessness of it, or at what she feels as the intrusiveness.
Kind of odd that she views Philip as her only constancy, even though she still barely knows him as a person. I get that she feel betrayed and deceived by the fairies. Yet she still seems to derive some comfort from her mother's presence, even though she knows it was her own parents who'd ordered her seclusion in the first place.
"Philip is leading the war." Kind of brings up images from Lord of the Rings. While that's not what we see in the movie, it sure could have been that way and perhaps that's something that came out of the limits of animation at the time it was produced.
"The Pain enters me..." I'm a little unsure why the italics start here. I'm also unsure what the "Pain" is. I figure it's the psychological weight of her realization, but it somehow feels like something else.
You slip into the past tense a few times during the italicized section.
It feels like she's kind of watching herself from a disembodied state or a migraine fog or some-such. Is that what you're trying to communicate?
The dress is precious AND hated at the same time?
She feels that she herself doesn't matter?
Grey and black splotches...vision distortion?
Why did she understand so few of the words? Did she just not understand the context? Or did they not cut through the fog of Pain?
So Maleficent planted something in Aurora's mind about the rail. Interesting.
Should be "I was led to..."
She's still convinced that kings eat princesses, huh?
Geez, this chapter's depressing! I guess that's the point, but wow. Her wishing to die reminds me of something G'kar says in B5: "To die is to end the cycle of pain."
Why's this one entitled "Like a Grape?"
Oh, there's the explanation for the italics. In this case, it might be better to denote the monotone in another way.
| kuraby chapter 110 . 3/14
love this multilingual stuff.
| kuraby chapter 99 . 3/13
wait, who's this woodworker?
| kuraby chapter 68 . 3/11
still floored. words can't describe what i'm feeling. Too strong to honor this chapter.
| kuraby chapter 61 . 3/11
Ouch. I remember that part. I like how King Leonard recalled that.
And that new perspective makes the freedom-run more gruesome.
| kuraby chapter 34 . 3/11
Wow, briar is being a badass. Very nice. It does add to her strong character.
| Unther chapter 7 . 3/8
This is clearly a flash-back. But I only know because I'm familiar enough with SB. More of an observation and I'm still unsure about what's the best way to denote flash-back chapters.
It seems to me that there's not much difference between their fairy and human forms. Oh, and on the first line, you go back and forth between past and present tense.
So I wonder, the fairies don't ever seem to get used to not using magic. Is this a world-view thing?
...bare toes gripping the soft loam. Nice! I love the textural description.
Even at so young an age, it seems she already races with squirrels.
That's a really cool and cute ecology lesson. it took 18 tries to correctly sew a smock? Do they actually carry the basket full of loam? And that stuff can be heavy!
| Unther chapter 6 . 3/1
Another great dream sequence! The opening felt kind of oppressive. I've been out hiking in a dead-quiet forest and it's just tangibly eerie, just like how you suggest here. I was once hiking across Wickiup Plain just south of Oregon's South Sister. It was after dark, the moon was full, a light mist settled in the low places, and it was dead still with no wind and no sound by my own footfalls and breathing. Same thing on the Benson Plateau just south of the Columbia Gorge. Dead still, with low fog blocking an autumn sun and clinging to the gnarly, Burtonesque conifers.
Nice note about predators and scent. I remember spending an entire day and then some constantly whirling around to look over my shoulder while hiking through the Siskiyous once just to make sure there wasn't a cougar on my six. I didn't really have the luxury of choosing my orientation to the wind, though, and I just had to go where the trail went.
A living spinning wheel. That's creepy, especially juxtaposed with her prohibition against them. Was that, by any chance, inspired by the living mattresses in the Hitchhiker trilogy?
Ah, not knowing how to deal with a particular kind of wildlife...yeah, that'll do it! It's central to people's fears about wildlife in the real world.
I love the gymnastics you have her do. Not just in this chapter, but in previous ones as well. She comes across as very nimble and graceful. And flexible...which I'm sure Philip will appreciate later...wink, wink.
Wow, you make a spinning wheel sound scary! Reminds me a little of the foodimals in "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2."
Red, red lips. I don't recall her lips being particularly red. Were they, or do you have her wearing lipstick? Not sure what they did for that in Period, though probably something with iron oxide...I'd have to look it up, though, but I'm pretty sure they had cosmetics back then; they certainly did during the Colonial Era and that was still way before we started making all this synthetic garbage. Or is that detail something that's exaggerated in her dream?
Great imagery on her leap. That was beautiful.
...fierce freedom of the forest... Love it! Nice alliteration, too, but the imagery is even better and I think illustrates how the whole thing is a part of her to the extent that I think she'd get along quite well with Pocahontas.
That thing's a lot like a spider.
She's really in a low spot and I can feel it. Your use of the present tense active voice amplifies this. I'm left cringing after the last sentence.
| Unther chapter 5 . 2/23
That first bit in italics...a dream or a hallucination, I'm not sure which...nearly made my skin crawl. That was really dark! But it so perfectly illustrates Aurora's mental state, that she's not sure what's real or what's illusion, lost on the sea of her own uneasy perception.
So she wakes up back in the Palace? I feel as disoriented as Aurora does. I guess that's intentional. That's in interesting commentary about her clothes...that she thinks they're going to fall off...is that both a reaction to her previous clothes-shedding and to the fact that all of her dresses are designed to have a maid close them up the back?
Ah, yes, there's the maid, as I expected. Aurora's not used to having retinue!
Wow, she's really having some serious existential, Descartian issues, isn't she? You're doing a phenomenal job of illustrating that!
Interesting that she's reaching out and grasping at her birth-mother as a source of psychological stability.
"Like a ripe berry in front of a hungry squirrel." Nice metaphor. Not only is it just a good one, it reflects something that's familiar to Aurora specifically. Same with other metaphors you use in the chapter.
You capitalize Pain...not sure I recall what that is...a panic attack?
Eating her friends...shudder!
"...to be one with what is beyond the walls." That's an interesting expression. What the heck did Maleficent do to her?
I'm already seeing a lot of parallels with RGH, particularly in all the new experiences following her Homecoming: meeting a neverending parade of people; eating unfamiliar foods; unfamiliar customs.
| Unther chapter 4 . 2/7
She chitters back. Are we to understand that she speaks Squirrel?
In that second line, the second sentence: your participles are dangling.
She leaps into branches? I don't remember that from the movie. Is it something you invented to fill in a blank?
You have her growing up kind of like a young Pocahontas. She'd make a great addition to the Dunedain Rangers in Oregon!
Should probably be "out-race..."
I love what you did with the tension between her perception of practicality and her "aunts'" insistence on propriety.
The strangers taking the friends and trees and plants. Erg...reminds me of that farm scene from RGH. Did the fairies really not know, or were they just not saying? They wouldn't let her leave the forest...hmm...yet more parallels with Rapunzel.
Wow! That was pretty cool! She could go for Olympic Gold in Gymnastics! I love how you've fleshed out and strengthened the character. You make her more than just a dawdler waiting around to reach her majority and wait out the curse...never mind that she doesn't know she's in the Medieval Witness Protection Program.
| Unther chapter 3 . 2/2
You really don't stop the roller-coaster in this one. The mood feel good at the beginning, even though we recall she's just been abducted, then "how disappointing." Ouch.
"...returns to me..." Here, "to me" feels redundant. I think the sentence would be a bit smoother if you were to delete this instance of "to me." Or perhaps rephrase it, though I think that would be overkill, as the sentence is perfectly good otherwise.
Ooo...that next sentence...I can FEEL the imagery in there, like she's been virtually dismembered. Cringe. Then, "...hurt less than living" really shows us how much she's in a bad place psychologically.
And she still seems to be struggling with the dissonance of the fact that her aunts ARE fairies.
Now a glimmer of hope...which I expect to be smashed based on where we are in the story and its overall mood...but it remains. Not that this is a bad thing and if this were the final chapter, it would feel complete and leave us with warm fuzzies, which were nicely done. But since it isn't, and not even close, I'm a hair confused. We know from the movie that she eventually returns and that the things in this chapter do occur, so we can infer a jump forward in time. But if you the writer assume the reader hasn't seen the movie, or perhaps not in a good long while, we're left to conclude either that she must be dreaming, or...I don't know what, because at the end of the last chapter Maleficent has abducted Aurora.
You jumped back into the past tense a few times after beginning in the present tense. Though this, as well as your fondness for commas, already seems to be better than it was in RGH. I recall what I was trying to do with commas when I was in jr. high and, oh, holy moly, did I abuse those!
I love how you use internal monologue and stick with it. It's been VERY effective so far!
| Unther chapter 2 . 1/29
Ooo. Now we get to look inside Maleficent's head. That first bit, while we see it from the outside in the movie, really reminds me of what Voldemort or a Sith Lord would do! It somehow feels creepier this way.
Ah, the "someone else did a better job at your destruction" thing. Reminds me of that scene in Galaxy Quest. A total Mwahaha moment.
She really gives me the creeps in this scene.
And that long list of enumerated things the fairies had taken away from Aurora. How demoralizing!
Kind of makes me wonder if Maleficent is right about all that, or if it's part of her own twisted perception of things, part of her drive to pervert what's good. And yet she STILL wants to cause Auorora MORE suffering? Yikes! But why? I mean, besides that she's evil and that's just what evil does?
Ah, so you have Aurora fighting Maleficent. I suppose that should stand to reason, even if we don't really see it in the movie.
"...screams inside her mind..." Shudder!
Should be "...much more than everything else..." Wait...you have her naked? You're really NOT writing the PG version, are you?
I like your continued use of the present tense. It makes things feel more immediate.
So is Maleficent, like, Sauron's sister or something? Because...geez!
| Unther chapter 1 . 1/25
"...lying in bed, whining about how aweful their lives are." LOL! Elsa could relate, I bet.
Ouch! Talk about an existential crisis! I can feel her pain, even if I can't relate to it. And there's the obvious parallel with Rapunzel's upbringing.
Ah, those pesky dreams again.
"They took my name!" Whoa. Never really even telling her why she shouldn't talk to strangers and so on. You'd think it would have been better to have just been straight with her from the beginning. Sure, plausible deniability has a place, but really? Seems that caused way more trouble than it should have.
The unicorn? I don't recall a unicorn.
And she only knows what she reads in the stories. Bummer. But I guess it's a lot like the misconceptions we moderns have about the lives of Medieval nobility.
"Princesses are weak." She's clearly never heard of the self-rescuing ones!
A wand had thrown her across the room when she'd tried to use it. LOL! Wonder if she'd have blown stuff up like Nevil Longbottom.
Somehow, it hadn't really occurred to me that the fairies aren't exactly human. Maybe that's the way it should be.
"...making me dance myself to death." That sounds vaguely familiar...from another Grimm tale, is it?
"...bowels feel weak..." Nice imagery!
"...the fairy that had been Aunt Flora..." It's almost like talking about zombies, or Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Does she really not get the idea of a disguise? Or is it just that she's dealing with cognitive dissonance? Which I guess she is, but I'd have thought she'd have switched gears faster than this.
"I am nothing before them and I am a lie." Cringe.
"...like my bones had been torn from them." More nice imagery!
The whole thing does touch on the idea of names. It reminds me of a particular episode of Babylon 5 which revolves around the question "Who are you?"
"It couldn't get any worse, could it?" Shakes head. NEVER say it could be worse! Has she learned nothing from Frankenstein? ;-)
There's so much more emotional tension in this scene the way you tell it. That's certainly from Aurora's inner monologue.
You're still over-comma-ing a little. Not sure your Authors's Notes are necessary. They're good questions, though. I'd always thought she was just being dramatic and I wanted to reach into the screen, bap her upside the head and tell her to get a grip!