Lyncia
J.A. Waters
(4 reviews)
A story on gods, death, pain, and adventure. Completed on 18 November, 2015. Lyncia Eyresin is ... Show More
Genres:
Adventure, Fantasy, High Fantasy, Thriller
Tags:
fantasy, lyncia, worldbuilder, magic, female protagonist, running away, soul-searching, first person, body sharing, gods, religion, mythos

Beginnings

The practice sword rattled within my grip. My hand was still aching after the last round. It was a good ache, one that spoke of progress and time well spent. My mind tallied up the precise areas of soreness. Aching muscles were warning me of my limit.

The next attacks came on quickly. Each was strong and varied. I blocked, then parried, and successfully warded off harm. But my muscles trembled. I was traipsing my ability’s edge. My arms were burning and each fingertip sported new blisters. All the talcum powder from my gloves had run down my arms. It made the reddish tone of my skin look pink. My hair felt grimy with sweat and a loose dark strand tumbled in front of my eyes.

Jacob's gritted teeth told me he was frustrated. His muffled growl spoke of a rising anger. It was likely directed more at himself than me. My parry had sent his blade wide and he jumped back quickly. Creating distance, it was just enough to avoid my blunted weapon. He was taller than me, but just barely so. He hadn’t been able to depend on reach for years now.

I didn't hesitate to follow and sent out quick thrusts that were mostly feints. Part of me still didn't know how to close an attack. The knowledge was there from long bouts of reading and practice. Despite that, use of the information was fickle and elusive. It was the second week I'd prevented Jacob from 'killing' me. Our fights kept ending in draws or minor wounds. I couldn't kill him either.

Just surviving was getting old. The desire to win burned me in a way that was new, in a way that seemed irrational. When weapons practice had started, it'd been a tedious bore. There were forms to remember, harsh exercises, and painful lessons. Surviving each day was an accomplishment. Those early years had been hard won and immensely rewarding. Despite that, I'd almost quit, but I had wanted to prove my capability.

I needed to, really. The training had been a huge orchestration on my part. Father hadn't wanted me to learn the sword. He called it useless for a princess. I couldn't stand the idea of proving him right. All the barons of Galania did that for him. Even the blessing of Aldyor wouldn’t help me convince him he was wrong, let alone that I could be right.

Truth be told, I never thought I would use the skill in a real fight. Yet, finally I'd broken through some barrier of self-awareness. I could feel the power in knowing the ability. I understood more and had to depend on memorization less. It made winning feel like a tantalizing possibility. At first I was just glad to fight back without being soundly beaten. But then, there was a chance of something more.

Jacob eyed me warily while edging to my left. "Come on then, Lyncia. Let out that eagerness I've been seeing. Is your body so weak that it can’t swing the blade proper? Or is that really the best you can do?"

Reacting to your opponent's taunts isn't generally advisable. They would expect that, or so Jacob always recited. However, he knew me and was growing used to my style of fighting. I had never reacted to his stupid taunts. They had no power, no heft, for they were stupid and boring. My lady-in-waiting knew better japes. Jacob taught by the books, and even his curses were lifted from the pages. Usually, I was reserved and defensive. I would hold back and watch.

So, I changed. Instead of being patient, I darted forward with a loud cry. My intent was on broadcasting a false attack. I leaned left and couldn't help but grin at the flash of surprise in his eyes. It was gone so quick I almost believed it imagined, but I hoped the lost moment would be enough.

His sword rose in reaction to my false-intentions. The time between breaths hung still in my mind. All was frozen in that rushing clarity of surging adrenaline. I could hardly believe he'd made such a foolish mistake.

I saw the opening. As if driven to a beacon, some part of my brain gestured madly, "There! There! Attack!" My blade twisted as my arm whipped forward to reverse my swing. The motion slapped the sword's "edge" at Jacob's turned hip. His armor was just open enough, and I felt the hit reverberate from my arm to shoulder.

And at that same moment I flew backwards from a gauntlet-driven punch knocking the wind from my lungs. Caught completely off guard, I tumbled onto my side and rolled to a stop. Panicked, I scrambled away with thanks that I'd kept my sword. Standing in a hurry, the courtyard spun into focus as my mind cleared.

Dust filled the air within the dark circular walls. It slowly dissipated to reveal one of the tall castle towers against a backdrop of blue sky. We were in the western yard, a side space for inconspicuous guests to enter and guardsmen to train. The tightly-fitted tiles beneath our feet were in drastic need of being swept after a recent dust-storm from the eastern deserts.

Jacob stood where I'd hit him. He was pulling the armored faulds from his waist and rubbing his hip. I realized that his sword was already sheathed. "You got me," he said, grimacing, running a hand through his short black hair, "Hard to admit, but even that punch wouldn't have kept me alive. Not after the bite a real sword would've ripped open. Would’ve sliced clear to my thigh."

The tension left me with my muscles wavering. My body was very tired, and it was a struggle to sheath my own sword smoothly, "Truly, that would've been a killing blow?" The victory felt hollow. It would've led to survival, sure, but it wasn't the clean finish recorded in books. Then again, I hardly wanted a training session to lead to beheading.

Gloved hands clapped together from the side of the silty courtyard. Gulie grinned and pushed back his bangs as he stepped between us. “Impressive! Very impressive! I can’t believe you beat the old bastard!”

"Course she did,” grumbled Jacob as he crouched and thudded on his rear. “And a long-deserved win it was." His armor was covered in dust and his dark red skin was peppered in grime. I likely looked worse from my roll on the ground. “Sir, if you pushed half as hard as the Princess, maybe you’d improve that footwork of yours.”

The young man rolled his eyes and arced an eyebrow my way. “Lyncie, why do we let our teacher get away with such disrespect? I’m having trouble believing that was even a killing blow. Are you sure you didn’t give her the win?”

His voice grew a bit distant, "Nothing given there. I'd have been overrun in a battle, finished off by time or a caved in skull." He stretched his neck back while peering at the endless fire at the tower’s top, “Ald, I have tending duty today. I don’t want to climb all those stairs.”

“Hush, Gulie. You are just jealous, and I believe you owe me some tokens from our wager.” I glanced back to the old guardsman. His tiredness surprised me. I still thought him indestructible. When we'd first begun practicing, it felt impossible to even hold a sword. Bearing one against a seasoned fighter had been terrifying. "Such a noble death," I grumbled, "Falling into the mud, stepped on by worn boots." A column helped support my weariness as I wiped sweat from my brow.

He scowled and met my gaze. "Noble death?" He growled the words, "No such thing, just death, plain and dirty." His eyes swept to the young earl, "What is the first rule of a true fight?"

We both repeated the answer with smirks on our faces, "There are no rules in a true fight. When two opponents face each other, winning is the only rule worth subscribing to. Otherwise, you die."

Jacob nodded. "Good, now remember for real this time. If you go out in the world expecting people to treat you fairly, you'll be dead blinding quick. The borders will push back eventually, they always do."

I frowned and felt my expression tighten. He could be so moody. At times the guardsman came off as cold and foul. Time had lent understanding. Somewhen, he'd been hurt. Jacob trusted little, cared little, and seemed to enjoy even less. His mannerisms were dry even in good humor. What jokes he told were worth more groaning than laughter. His company could wear thin quickly, but his knowledge was worth the ire. "Father sealed the borders and created a unified Galania. It would be madness were any of our neighbors to attack."

Gulie nodded. “Madness because they would die horribly. Our kingdom has the supreme naval force in all of Nalan. Our guardsmen could draw together as a substantial army.”

"Yes," said Jacob, "But the King accomplished our peace through a brutality that frightens foreigners more than any ships or promised ranks. And it only proves my point. He did not follow any rules of battle. It was effective, but grudges have long memories."

My emotions swirled in opposing directions. I supported my father's rule, but disliked him as a person. "Is this to be the lesson for today? Borderline savagery?"

He waved me away as he started to get up. "No, I think you've earned a break." Jacob struggled upward with the use of his practice sword. "Aldyor be blessed, but finally one of you is bearing fruit. You’re what, nineteen this year? So it only took ten years to best your teacher.”

The earl made a face and mimed the words ‘ten years’ with a wrinkled nose.

I lifted an eyebrow and tried not to snort laughter. I redirected my attention to Jacob’s serious grimace. “And you are forty-two this year, are you not? Then I think ‘only ten years’ is a bit of a dismissal. You have an entire life that I just matched in half your time.”

Jacob smirked. “Alright, alright. You did well today, milady. But go on, we’re done."

Gulie turned to follow me.

“Not you, sire. Apologies, but I’ll need one more bout from you.”

The young man scowled. “Guardsman Jacob! Are you sure you can even stand? Would it not be better if I accompany the princess through the halls?”

My arms crossed over my chest. “Why? Are you going to protect me, dear Gye?” I gave him a wink. “I rather think I would fare better by myself.”

He pursed his lips at me and drew his blunted blade. “Maybe I will stay. While you go off to relax, oh Lady of the Blade, I will be getting better.”

Jacob grunted. “It’ll take you more than a couple of swings of the sword to match her.”

I laughed and turned away while I still had the energy to leave. My body wanted to collapse. I was glad I wouldn't have to sit down for more book studies. That would've been a recipe for having to listen to Jacob drone on about death and pain and the triumphs of father as a tactician. Aside from a reluctance to bear such tediousness, I really wanted a bath. I called over my shoulder, "Thank you for the lesson, Guardsman Jacob. As usual, you were masterful." I twirled my fingers in an informal goodbye. Practice was always a delightful reprieve from the royal formalities.

My step was quicker than I would've liked as I walked away. Risking more lectures wasn't worth grace. I moved into the hall and felt grateful once out of view.

The castle still slept. The emptiness was always a relief when I would wearily return to my room. There was peace in the streaming beginnings of sunlight filtering through long empty halls. Rich carpet made my footsteps into whispers. Mounted mirrors on the walls made everything glow. Without Jacob or Gulie near, I let the limp I felt show, and I extended each stride to stretch out soreness in my calves. Swordplay was my training's primary purpose, but it also included conditioning that left my body weak.

Guards were out making their rounds as the only presence while dawn still lingered. The bright white of their uniforms took on the rosy light in the halls. Their golden rank and sigil gleamed. I nodded to them, but I did not expect an answer. Though I knew them all by name, father’s orders were for strict discipline in Eyreso's military. The entire kingdom was run with that discipline. All bowed either to the rule of law or for the faith of Aldyor. That tight expectation of order could chafe.

Rounding the corner into my room's hallway, there were a curious number of servants already rushing from one room to another. That was unusual, but maybe some baron was attending a visit. I usually sat in on council meetings, and did not look forward to more dry speeches on which duchy needed which allocation of imports. Let the merchants send their goods all down the Trade Road with abandon. Deliberations on tariffs could be maddening in their tediousness. Still, politicking was a necessary evil. Law was the civilized way to power.

No, I realized, it was doubtful that the visitor was just one baron. Already I’d spotted colors of several different duchies rather than only Galan’s baronies. Whatever was going on involved the whole kingdom of Galania instead of one part or the other. My aggravation at father grew. Had he called for some great ceremony? Would I be expected to prepare a speech or travel somewhere for support? I took a breath to stop myself from following that mental path.

Thinking nothing more of the servants filling the halls, I opened the door to my room. After all, whatever was going on, I'd learn about it from the king himself soon enough. Perhaps he would refrain from shouting at me this time.
Log in to add a comment or review for this chapter Chapter updated on: 1/30/2016 10:10:18 PM
  • Yashita Ghazi commented on :
    5/31/2017 3:24:00 PM
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  • TP Keating commented on :
    12/4/2016 11:46:29 AM
    I like the initial short sentences, which convey the sense of urgency in the physical contest. While the details about the setting and customs come across as entirely ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Hello again, sir! Thank you a bunch for checking out Lyncia as well. This story is definitely one of my favorite, so I'm glad you enjoyed the opening chapter. It went through a hundred iterations to get to this point, haha, but I'm glad that tuned it well.
      12/21/2016 11:00:35 PM
  • Kenny Smith commented on :
    9/10/2016 5:14:59 AM
    So in just the first few paragraphs I was sucked in. The sentence pacing is a bit choppy, but I have a feeling that it simply gets better from here.
    • J.A. Waters It's always awesome to read that the writing pulled at someone! Thank you. I can see what you mean about the pacing, and I do hope it improves over time. I appreciate you checking this out!
      9/12/2016 9:41:27 PM
  • anna brown commented on :
    3/31/2016 1:56:40 AM
    Hello good day, i will like to meet you in person, am miss Anna, am from France and am leaving in London, please contact me on my email id at (annh1brown@hotmail.com), ... Show More
  • Alexa Monty commented on :
    1/27/2016 4:22:18 PM
    Great opening, I really love the pacing.
    • J.A. Waters Thank you! I like the opening a lot myself. It'll be tweaked a little bit in the near future, but I think it's pretty solid other than that. Thanks for checking out my story!
      1/27/2016 10:24:59 PM
    • Alexa Monty Hey check out mine if you get the chance, it's a similar genre. :)
      1/27/2016 11:12:53 PM
  • Ashley Bach commented on :
    12/23/2015 7:25:04 PM
    I think the voice you have now works in conveying an other-worldly quality, but at the same time I think this is setting a foundation for her voice, and the revision ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Good point. I think this draft of the story certainly has her coming off colder than I'd like. I'm working to push her personality as more warmth and sass in the rewrite. Thanks for reading!
      1/7/2016 8:31:57 PM
  • Dev Chatterji commented on :
    10/30/2015 4:53:44 AM
    This is great example of first person narrative done absolutely addictingly. I will buy Lyncia a drink any day of the week she wants. Am excited to read the rest!
    • J.A. Waters Goodness, what a lovely comment! I do hope the rest follows suit with such kind words. And Lyncia would gladly accept the drink. She'll need it.
      11/2/2015 6:48:37 PM
  • Nic Eaton commented on :
    9/29/2015 3:52:28 PM
    I like that you spent a good deal of time on their sparring. You were able to draw out a lot of Lyncia's personality and her relationship with her father. I normally ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters What a lovely comment, thank you! I wanted to challenge myself with first person, and I do see them cautioned quite a bit. Anyway, glad it's working so far, thank you for reading!
      10/6/2015 7:59:09 PM
  • Angi Shearstone commented on :
    9/21/2015 12:50:34 AM
    Great start, great way to lead into the characters. Good action scene.
    • J.A. Waters Thank you! It was certainly a fun chapter to write. I'm glad it intros these two pretty well, and thank you for reading and commenting!
      10/6/2015 7:58:11 PM
  • Clarence Simmons commented on :
    9/29/2015 6:51:16 PM
    Strange array of visitors sounds like when my godchildren come to call.
    • J.A. Waters I at least hope that your godchildren don't give as much trouble as Lyncia's visitors... And hello! Thank you for reading and dropping a comment!
      10/6/2015 7:57:33 PM
  • Dean Moses commented on :
    8/24/2015 6:29:17 AM
    I missed reading Nod-Off, so I decided to check out another one of your serials. As with Nod-Off, the descriptions and dialogue feel realistic and enjoyable to read. I ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Dean! Hey man, thanks for checking out Lyncia! And you looked through the wiki too? That's really cool, apologies that it isn't nearly as exhaustive as I want it to be. I've been meaning to get back to that some more, but it's a fun side-project since I've got several stories yet to take place on Nalan. Really glad the story's qualities were enjoyable for you here as well. It's a different feel than Nod-Off, but there are some similar ideas stuck in here.
      8/26/2015 11:23:26 AM
    • Dean Moses No problem, I think the wiki page is an excellent way to both expand your story and advertise it.
      8/27/2015 6:22:17 AM
  • Anonymous commented on :
    8/15/2015 8:30:11 PM
    Intelligent and graphic. Great imaginanative storytelling
    • J.A. Waters Thank you! I'm glad it comes across that way. Thank you for reading!
      8/22/2015 4:44:48 PM
  • Anonymous commented on :
    8/15/2015 8:29:55 PM
    Intelligent and graphic. Great imaginanative storytelling
  • Katya Kolmakov commented on :
    8/14/2015 1:47:04 AM
    I have enjoyed this first chapter immensely! A wonderful precise description of the physicality of mastering a new skill! The world is created in nice sharp strokes. ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Well thank you for beginning the story! I'm glad this first chapter flowed so well, that's always a pleasure to hear! And welcome to JukePop as well and best of luck with your story! I'll try to take a look at yours sometime soon as well!
      8/14/2015 11:56:03 AM
  • AH Gilreath commented on :
    8/10/2015 5:36:14 PM
    Excellent character introduction to Lyncia. I feel like I have a good grasp already on ego she is, how she feels about her duties and her worldview from this short chapter alone.
    • J.A. Waters Thanks AH! (Or maybe I should stick to A, that just looks like I'm screaming...) But yeah, a lot of good feedback has really made this a strong intro I think. I'm glad it came across as such for you, and it's really neat seeing you taking a look at Lyncia! Thanks for the read and comment!
      8/10/2015 11:12:51 PM
  • D # commented on :
    7/3/2015 7:31:43 PM
    The fight scene was a good opener. Drew me in. And I appreciated Jacob's survival advice. (No such thing as a noble death; just death). It reminds me a bit of Dune with ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Thanks, David! Dune feel huh, that's cool. I remember enjoying that book's sense of weightiness to its politics and officials. If I'm capturing any of that then that's awesome to hear. Thank you for the kind and thoughtful words.
      7/4/2015 11:08:08 AM
    • D # Yes, the political weightiness. I don't know if that's where it's going, but that's the sense I got from this chapter. Will be curious to see how it develops.
      7/4/2015 11:16:24 PM
  • Trey Lyncher commented on :
    6/18/2015 7:47:10 AM
    Awesome fight scene love the practice great way to introduce characters.
    • J.A. Waters Thanks! It was written as a short sort of flash-fiction exercise a while back and later developed into the full story of Lyncia. I enjoy trying to make action work on a page as it is a bit of a challenge without imagery. Thanks again for reading my work!
      6/18/2015 9:28:26 AM
  • David Khalaf commented on :
    6/9/2015 8:41:26 PM
    Colorful opening. Your description of the swordplay was lively and easy to understand -- which I know is harder than it seems. Good introduction to the princess. I'd love ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Very good point about the tease and cliffhanger. I think I can fit something like that in. I'm planning on doing a bit of editing based on newer suggestions, so thanks for some more fuel for that! Thank you for reading!
      6/11/2015 6:41:46 AM
  • Eliza Knightly commented on :
    5/18/2015 10:32:47 PM
    Your prose flows well! And I like the suspense at the end of the chapter. Is there anyway you could hint at it sooner? Maybe somewhere in the long fight scene? Just a thought.
    • J.A. Waters That's a really nice suggestion and definitely worth considering. I'll have to look into the chapter and see if there's a way to fit some more tidbits in without harming the flow. Thank you for reading!
      5/21/2015 11:42:47 AM
  • Evan Marcroft commented on :
    2/10/2015 10:13:13 PM
    While your writing is strong, I feel like this first chapter doesn't do enough to establish the setting. Going by your synopsis its set in a constructed world, but not ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Yes, that's one of those balance things I've been struggling with since starting this story. It began as a bit of an experiment in first-person and I'm trying to figure out that balance of how to get her to describe things that she already knows about. I do have some ideas and instantly knew what you were talking about in the lack of a setting here. This chapter exists almost entirely in a vacuum of the character interaction. Thanks for reading, and for the helpful comment!
      2/10/2015 10:19:51 PM
    • Evan Marcroft No prob bro
      2/10/2015 10:59:00 PM
    • Alexander Hollins personally, it shouldn't. I love settings that evolve, things that still raise questions. give me a last chapter of the book off hand comment about something that all the characters already know, because its OBVIOUS to them, that suddenly makes all the things that bugged me throughout the book make more sense, and you'll find me happy with the setting!
      5/3/2015 4:20:14 PM
    • J.A. Waters I understand that perspective too. The idea of revelations and the ability to ponder setting as well as plot is fun for me. As with many writing work, I believe a balance is definitely in order. This chapter has undergone a couple of revisions since Evan wrote this comment to try to reach that balance and I shifted the story's writing overall afterward. Thank ya.
      5/4/2015 12:49:34 AM
  • Allison Spector commented on :
    4/10/2015 9:46:14 PM
    A great opening. A nice window into the mind and world of the protagonist. I look forward to reading more.
    • J.A. Waters Ahahaha, wow, you really blew through the whole thing so far. I'm so glad it caught your interest and really appreciate your comments and your thoughts. Thank you!
      4/11/2015 5:16:48 PM
  • Jennifer Flath commented on :
    3/23/2015 12:39:51 AM
    I enjoyed this. I have similar feelings about exercise. I would like to be good at things, but, ugh, all that work and hurting. The hurting. Random thought that may or ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters I think I've swapped back and forth on that line about her princessliness a couple of times. I do like the idea of making it more of a reveal, and wonder how her title mention may change assumptions and expectations. Thanks for the thoughtful comment, it's good to get ideas for change and morphing the story. Thanks for reading, and I'm glad you enjoyed it.
      3/25/2015 7:57:07 PM
  • Delete This Account commented on :
    3/8/2015 12:30:39 AM
    I like this so far: a smooth start that sets up a sense of a protagonist, with hints of a much larger story to come. I look forward to reading more!
    • J.A. Waters I'm glad those larger story hints are peeking through for you. I've really enjoyed tweaking this into its current form, I like how it's come to life. Thank you for reading, and for commenting!
      3/10/2015 10:56:13 PM
  • Steve Conary commented on :
    2/24/2015 12:14:39 AM
    I loved that. I was drawn from the first. That was an amazing fight scene, well paced and tense in all the right places.
    • J.A. Waters Thanks! I'm glad the fight scene worked for you as well! It was enjoyable to write and some tweaks seem to have made it really solid! Thanks for reading!
      3/4/2015 4:44:16 PM
  • Kevin Boyer commented on :
    2/26/2015 12:57:43 AM
    A very good start that sets the tone of our main character quite well. It's fascinating feeling like I have a solid idea of what Lyncia is like. Even when I realize that ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Thank you so very much for the glowing comment. This chapter has had a good bit of tweaking since first posting it here and everyone's been very helpful in making it strong.
      2/26/2015 2:12:16 PM
  • Andre Clemons commented on :
    2/22/2015 2:22:01 AM
    What made me hooked on this, especially from "Beginnings", was how concisely you choreograph a fight scene. The story starts right into the action, and is easy to follow ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Thanks for taking a look, and for the kind comment! Everyone's really helped develop this into a strong intro chapter!
      2/26/2015 2:00:53 PM
  • Eric commented on :
    2/15/2015 6:33:26 PM
    I enjoy your writing style. I always enjoy a sword fight as well. I agree with Howalt that it is easy to picture and imagine and the writing is clean. I like clean ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Thanks for the very kind comment and the compliments. It certainly helps the ol' confidence in a story to get good comments! Appreciate the read, and look forward to more of your new story. I'll have to check out Letum as well.
      2/15/2015 7:00:45 PM
  • M. Howalt commented on :
    2/15/2015 12:57:05 PM
    I really like how tangible everything feels. It's not hard to imagine the fight at all. It was also great to be so much in the narrator's head and get a clear impression ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters I have to thank Evan for suggestions to breathe some of that life into this chapter. It's changed a decent amount since the first time I wrote it; originally it was only about 700 words long. I'm glad you enjoyed it and felt it easy to follow. Thank you for reading!
      2/15/2015 4:29:51 PM
  • Kathy Joy commented on :
    2/8/2015 2:11:44 PM
    I love the student/teacher relationship between Jacob and Lyncia - there's so much potential. It could end up beng romantic, it could become paternal (judging by your ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Thank you for the kind comment! It's interesting how characters so quickly take on lives of their own, and Jacob is one of those that's relaly evolved just out of the ether of storytelling rather than a hard plan. I'm interested to see where he ends up as well.
      2/9/2015 6:05:54 AM
  • Steeven R. Orr commented on :
    2/5/2015 1:39:07 PM
    Great opening. I really enjoyed the spring match. I'll be reading more for certain. Adding it to my bookshelf.
    • Steeven R. Orr And of course, by spring match, I meant sparring match. :)
      2/5/2015 3:05:44 PM
    • J.A. Waters Thanks a bunch! I just figured you meant they were springing about... but yes, looking forward to seeing what you think of the rest!
      2/5/2015 4:31:45 PM
  • N.C. Gossner commented on :
    2/4/2015 10:04:28 PM
    Whoa! I like it! great opening chapter! I loved the fight scene, and watching her thoughts throughout it. Excellent read, I will be back for more!
    • J.A. Waters Thank you! I look forward to seeing what you think of the rest! I'm really happy the fight scene went over well.
      2/4/2015 11:23:01 PM
  • Jack Hudson commented on :
    2/4/2015 3:07:44 PM
    Have to agree with the others, such a good, gritty opening. Concise and visceral and a hard lesson learnt right at the offset. Look forward to the rest.
    • J.A. Waters I appreciate the very kind words, and your time in reading the story!
      2/4/2015 7:50:02 PM
  • Conni Byron commented on :
    2/3/2015 2:11:19 AM
    It's brilliant how you've started the story with a fight scene and also made such a likeable and defiant character and also giving us an insight to her world.
    • J.A. Waters Thanks! I really wanted to jump right into who Lyncia was and some of her thoughts and values. The training felt like a great introduction to some of her struggles, both internal and external.
      2/4/2015 11:55:20 AM
  • K R Williams commented on :
    1/30/2015 2:28:29 AM
    A good, gripping start! I really liked the fight scene as others have said. You also have a good 'voice' for your main character!
    • J.A. Waters Thank you! I struggled for days when initially starting this to figure out what I want her to sound like, especially since she's the narrator. I'm glad it settled into something worthwhile.
      2/1/2015 12:33:52 AM
  • Ryan Watt commented on :
    1/25/2015 7:29:45 AM
    I agree with Jerry that the fight scene was a great introduction to the mindset of Lyncia and to Jacob. I am curious to know more about the relationship between these ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters A good deal of what I'm attempting to explore involves relationships and their different forms, so I hope to fulfill that part of the characters lives at the very least. Thank you for the comment!
      1/28/2015 6:17:26 PM
  • Nathaniel Tower commented on :
    1/28/2015 4:09:44 AM
    A good fight scene is hard to pull off, but you did it well. And your main character is Jacob, which is the same as one of mine :)
    • J.A. Waters Thanks! I like to think out the fight scenes a bit actively, so I'm usually sitting at my desk 'throwing punches', so I'm glad the process shows some merit.
      1/28/2015 6:14:58 PM
  • Jake Young commented on :
    1/25/2015 9:13:46 PM
    Whelp one of your main characters is named Jake so I have to read this, thanks jukepop
    • J.A. Waters Aw man, now I feel like I've got to give Jake a bigger part! Haha, really though I'd be glad for your readership but can't promise much of Jacob. Thanks for dropping by!
      1/26/2015 6:03:10 PM
    • Jake Young It's alright we jacobs tend to underwhelm. That should work perfectly. And just sayin, I'm pretty sure that if the princess got to know Jacob a bit she'd find out he's actually a pretty swell guy.
      1/26/2015 9:38:23 PM
  • Jerry Fan commented on :
    1/22/2015 6:23:32 PM
    i really like how you kicked off the story with a good fight scene that showed off the Lyncia's character. nicely done as it pulled me in right away and made me want to keep reading.
    • J.A. Waters Thank you, Jerry. I'm really glad you enjoyed it! Thank you for the opportunity Jukepop provides and the great platform setup!
      1/22/2015 6:39:43 PM
    • Jerry Fan Of course! I'd encourage you to read other stories and offer your unique feedback. Participating on the community feed is a great way to build a network of other authors who will help spread word whenever you add a new chapter :)
      1/22/2015 6:54:21 PM
  • 10/30/2015 4:57:57 AM
    I find that first person narrative is usually hit or miss. But I think a sentence in the first chapter sums it up nicely, "Just surviving was getting old". This chapter ... Show More
  • 10/16/2015 2:22:46 PM
    Based on just the first chapter - Great characterization & worldbuilding. I can feel a hint of the scope of this world just in the opening page. Colour me hooked - I ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Lovely thoughts, thank you! You always read how important a first paragraph, page, chapter, can be, and I'm glad this one seems to be serving the story well so far. Thank you for reading and the kind review!
      10/17/2015 6:06:29 AM
  • Aden Ng gave
    6/17/2015 8:02:04 AM
    Waters writes a socially gripping fantasy, always tugging you along. He masterfully weaves together the complexity politics, religion, and a soul-searching journey, ... Show More
    • J.A. Waters Super thanks for the lovely and kind review! You gave me the first, nice! I'm definitelty excited to see that it's entertaining for you!
      6/17/2015 9:43:44 AM