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Old 08-10-2017, 05:06 AM View Post #1 (Link) Within my Blood [chapter 3]
SerialLove (Offline)
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The light of the sun reflected off the whiteness of the snow, blinding him. Jasper pulled his coat tighter around his shoulders as he stumbled along through the Santa Fe National Forest. Two weeks ago the state police had found his safe house in Las Lagunitas and he had been on the run ever since.

It had been a month since he escaped state custody. After the failed attempt at the local high school in Rio Rancho, Jasper had been remanded to the county jail pending trial, however, somewhere the paperwork got mixed up and they had put him on a transfer to the state penitentiary outside of Santa Fe, New Mexico. That convenient mix-up in paperwork and another prisoner's sudden projectile vomit gave him his only chance at freedom.

When one of the guards signaled for the bus to be pulled over in order to check on the inmate, Jasper simply rushed the driver and guard at the front. He managed to wrestle his way free from their grasps and pushed the safety on the door, fleeing into the barren mesa that spanned the length of the horizon. It was all rather easy in his opinion, and even though one of the officers did chase him down for a bit --Jasper was considerably faster-- they still had six other prisoners to worry about. So they let him go. They just drove on, as he disappeared into the desert landscape.

Of course, that's not what the press got an ear-full of when the statement was made. For how could the officers willingly admit that they just let a prisoner escape their custody. It would cause so much political and community uproar, that they stuck to a preconceived plan in mentioning something along the lines of being "caught off guard" and "suspect supposed to be armed and dangerous."

None the less, there Jasper was, handcuffed and swamped in the beige prison jumpsuit --two sizes too large-- running around the emptiness that is New Mexico. Now, here he was again, running around, however this time he was running in the snow, lost in a forest he didn't even know.

The wind started to pick up again, causing the branches of the trees all around him to shake, sending small flurries of snow to the ground. Underneath him, Jasper could hear the crunch of snow, and compared to the pureness of his surroundings, it sounded beast-like as each he step he took adulterated the silence. Pulling his coat even tighter, he ducked underneath a low-hanging branch. It was going to be dark soon and he had a decision to make; either he could keep going or find a place to buckle down for the night.

While the idea of sitting still for the next couple of hours, alone and in this weather deterred him. Jasper knew it would be better then continuing on as the temperature plummeted and his visibility got even worse. He could run in place if he really had to, but the chance of getting even more lost wasn't on his schedule.

He could see a small cluster of rocks up ahead -they would be a near perfect barrier from the coming winds- and made his way towards them, keeping his head down. Once, settled, Jasper leaned back against the biggest of the rocks and let much needed sleep wash over him.

-----

Coming out of whatever trance she put on him, Jasper backed away from the girl and lifted his riffle again. "I will shoot you," he said, stern but not as confident as before.

She just watched him, the nervous smile still playing on her lips. This time she knew something he didn't. While she had him completely captivated, one of the police officers had taken the moment to sneak up behind Jasper. It was what she had hoped for. She could see him now, pulling his gun silently from the holster on his belt. "Please, put the gun down, for your own sake," she replied.

"No!" Jasper stepped forwards again. "I won't listen to you. I know what you're trying to do you bitch, it's not going to work. You think if you try and act sweetly that I'm just going to do what you say, but guess what, I won't fall for that." Jasper's voice grew louder as the anger inside him threatened to boil over. "My father warned me about people like you, he said you're all worthless whores, scum, who don't deserve to live. None of you do," he said, waving the barrel of the riffle in the air before he settled it back on the girl in front of him.

Jasper had lost all the control he had before and this time the riffle bobbed up and down as his hands shook. He took another step towards the girl with black hair and gray eyes, pushing the gun to her chest. "I will count to three, move or you die," he hissed.

She meet his eyes again and held his gaze. The moment she decided to stand up to him, she also decided that he would have to look her in the eyes when he killed her. She didn't plan on backing down. in fact, she knew that if she distracted him long enough, the police would be able to take him down -without harm coming to anyone preferably but if not, she was ready. One life for hundreds, it was simple. So she just stood there, head held high, arms by her side, staring him down.

"One." Silence. "Two." Nothing. "Thr-"

"Put the gun down son," the officer behind Jasper yelled.

Startled, Jasper spun around on the balls of his feet, coming face to face with another gun, this one pointed at him. It was then that other officers started to swarm around the pair of teens, one of them grabbing the girl and pulling her to safety. Within minutes, Jasper was surrounded -ten guns pointed his way. "Please son, no one has to get hurt, just put the gun down."

"You're lying. You'll shoot me the moment I move, then you'll come up with some perfect cover story. Say I made a move to shoot. I know the way it works." Jasper yelled.

"I promise no one is going to shoot you, just put the gun down."

"Why should I, there's nothing left for me to live for anymore. Just shoot me and get it over with."

"I'm not going to shoot you. Look," the officer holstered his piece, "now it's your turn."

Jasper clenched his jaw. He knew if he gave up now his father would be disappointed in him, but he couldn't thinking about that girl. She was the first person to show anything but disgust towards him. He couldn't explain it, but he felt like she cared.

"Put the gun down," the officer said again. This time he took a step towards Jasper, reaching out to grab the riffle.

Jasper watched him, just as paralyzed as he had been when she leaned in to whisper in his ear. In seconds, the leading officer, Officer Willson, had the gun in his hands. As soon as the weapon was secure, another officer grabbed Jasper.

"These are for your own safety," the officer said, handcuffing him.

-----

The sharp cry of a crow cut through the still, winter air. It was early morning and overnight a fine layer of fresh snow blanketed the ground, masking all of Jasper's footprints. Finally something had turned in his favor. Standing up, Jasper stretched, hoping to relieve the stiffness of his muscles. Now that the cloudiness of the previous day had lifted, he could clearly see the endless miles of forest all around him.

"Great," he mumbled, "how am I ever gonna get out of this damn place."

Unable to remember the direction in which he came from the night before, Jasper took off in what he believed to be west. He had to get back to the city soon, the mere amounts of provisions he had grabbed before fleeing had run out long ago and now there was this heaviness weighing down inside him.

Jasper had water, it was all around him, he just had to scrape off the utter most layer of snow, fill his canteen and wait for it to melt. That wasn't the issue. The problem at hand was that he was literally starving. His stomach gurgled the first few days but eventually gave up, realizing that its futile attempts were worthless. At one point, he had tried to knock a bird out of a tree with some small rocks he found, but after about the third failed toss, the bird got the message and fluttered away.

Since then, he hadn't seen any signs of life and he worried about what would happen if he didn't get to food fast. Hell, at this point he'd rather be caught and taken back to prison. At least then he'd know when he'd get his next mean, and there'd be a cot for him to sleep on, which was way better then being soaked to the bone.

"Come on man, stop that. Think about what your old man would say," He said aloud. "You're a fighter, you can do this, just a few more miles."

Out of nowhere, the faintest aroma of cooked meat washed over him. Turning his head, Jasper could see long fingers of smoke reach their way into the sky. Where there was smoke there was fire, and where there was fire, there was the chance of people. So Jasper turned back around, took another step then stopped. He knew he shouldn't risk the chance of being recognized, but he was so hungry and the smell of the cooking meat -what ever it was- which hit him stronger now, beckoned him forwards.

"Fuck it," he said.
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Old 08-26-2017, 09:00 PM View Post #2 (Link)
addictedtoreading (Offline)
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I believe I have edited your other Within My Blood pieces, so let me know if I'm on the right track here or if you are finding my comments helpful (or want to discuss this work further).


First of all, is there a reason the entire text is in italics? Usually italics are reserved for flashbacks or specific separations of text. Just wondering.

The light of the sun reflected off the whiteness of the snow, blinding him. Jasper pulled his coat tighter around his shoulders as he stumbled along through the Santa Fe National Forest. Two weeks ago the state police had found his safe house in Las Lagunitas and he had been on the run ever since. I'm not sure if I like this last sentence, seems very "telling" vs. "showing" for me. If this is a novel then wouldn't the reader already know that Jasper was on the run?

It had been a month since he escaped state custody. After the failed attempt at the local high school in Rio Rancho, Jasper had been remanded to the county jail pending trial, however, somewhere the paperwork got mixed up and they had put him on a transfer to the state penitentiary outside of Santa Fe, New Mexico. That convenient mix-up in paperwork and another prisoner's sudden projectile vomit gave him his only chance at freedom. "only chance at freedom" feels a bit drastic and dramatic. Perhaps find different wording.

When one of the guards signaled for the bus to be pulled over in order to check on the inmate, Jasper simply rushed the driver and guard at the front. He managed to wrestle his way free from their grasps and pushed the safety on the door, fleeing into the barren mesa that spanned the length of the horizon. It was all rather easy in his opinion, and even though one of the officers did chase him down for a bit --Jasper was considerably faster-- they still had six other prisoners to worry about. So they let him go. They just drove on, as he disappeared into the desert landscape.

Of course, that's not what the press got an ear-full of when the statement was made. For how could the officers willingly admit that they just let a prisoner escape their custody. It would cause so much political and community uproar, that they stuck to a preconceived plan in mentioning something along the lines of being "caught off guard" and "suspect supposed to be armed and dangerous." And what effects has this had on Jasper's getaway? Is his name and photo on the news? Are police allowed to shoot him on sight?

None the less, there Jasper was, handcuffed and swamped in the beige prison jumpsuit --two sizes too large-- running around the emptiness that is New Mexico. Now, here he was again, running around, however this time he was running in the snow, lost in a forest he didn't even know.

The wind started to pick up again, causing the branches of the trees all around him to shake, sending small flurries of snow to the ground. Underneath him, Jasper could hear the crunch of snow, and compared to the pureness of his surroundings, it sounded beast-like as each he step he took adulterated the silence. Pulling his coat even tighter, he ducked underneath a low-hanging branch. It was going to be dark soon and he had a decision to make; either he could keep going or find a place to buckle down for the night.

While the idea of sitting still for the next couple of hours, alone and in this weather deterred him. Jasper knew it would be better then continuing on as the temperature plummeted and his visibility got even worse. He could run in place if he really had to, but the chance of getting even more lost wasn't on his schedule.

He could see a small cluster of rocks up ahead -they would be a near perfect barrier from the coming winds- and made his way towards them, keeping his head down. Once, settled, Jasper leaned back against the biggest of the rocks and let much needed sleep wash over him. I feel like this whole section of text is unneeded.

-----

Coming out of whatever trance she put on him, Jasper backed away from the girl and lifted his riffle again. "I will shoot you," he said, stern but not as confident as before. Oh so this is a flashback of what happened in the previous chapter and his arrest?

She just watched him, the nervous smile still playing on her lips. This time she knew something he didn't. While she had him completely captivated, one of the police officers had taken the moment to sneak up behind Jasper. It was what she had hoped for. She could see him now, pulling his gun silently from the holster on his belt. "Please, put the gun down, for your own sake," she replied.

"No!" Jasper stepped forwards again. "I won't listen to you. I know what you're trying to do you bitch, it's not going to work. You think if you try and act sweetly that I'm just going to do what you say, but guess what, I won't fall for that." Jasper's voice grew louder as the anger inside him threatened to boil over. "My father warned me about people like you, he said you're all worthless whores, scum, who don't deserve to live. None of you do," he said, waving the barrel of the riffle in the air before he settled it back on the girl in front of him.

Jasper had lost all the control he had before and this time the riffle bobbed up and down as his hands shook. He took another step towards the girl with black hair and gray eyes, pushing the gun to her chest. "I will count to three, move or you die," he hissed.

She meet his eyes again and held his gaze. The moment she decided to stand up to him, she also decided that he would have to look her in the eyes when he killed her. She didn't plan on backing down. in fact, she knew that if she distracted him long enough, the police would be able to take him down -without harm coming to anyone preferably but if not, she was ready. One life for hundreds, it was simple. So she just stood there, head held high, arms by her side, staring him down.

"One." Silence. "Two." Nothing. "Thr-"

"Put the gun down son," the officer behind Jasper yelled.

Startled, Jasper spun around on the balls of his feet, coming face to face with another gun, this one pointed at him. It was then that other officers started to swarm around the pair of teens, one of them grabbing the girl and pulling her to safety. Within minutes, Jasper was surrounded -ten guns pointed his way. "Please son, no one has to get hurt, just put the gun down."

"You're lying. You'll shoot me the moment I move, then you'll come up with some perfect cover story. Say I made a move to shoot. I know the way it works." Jasper yelled.

"I promise no one is going to shoot you, just put the gun down."

"Why should I, there's nothing left for me to live for anymore. Just shoot me and get it over with."

"I'm not going to shoot you. Look," the officer holstered his piece, "now it's your turn."

Jasper clenched his jaw. He knew if he gave up now his father would be disappointed in him, but he couldn't thinking about that girl. She was the first person to show anything but disgust towards him. He couldn't explain it, but he felt like she cared.

"Put the gun down," the officer said again. This time he took a step towards Jasper, reaching out to grab the riffle.

Jasper watched him, just as paralyzed as he had been when she leaned in to whisper in his ear. In seconds, the leading officer, Officer Willson, had the gun in his hands. As soon as the weapon was secure, another officer grabbed Jasper.

"These are for your own safety," the officer said, handcuffing him.
I like this ending.

-----

The sharp cry of a crow cut through the still, winter air. It was early morning and overnight a fine layer of fresh snow blanketed the ground, masking all of Jasper's footprints. Finally something had turned in his favor. Standing up, Jasper stretched, hoping to relieve the stiffness of his muscles. Now that the cloudiness of the previous day had lifted, he could clearly see the endless miles of forest all around him.

"Great," he mumbled, "how am I ever gonna get out of this damn place."

Unable to remember the direction in which he came from the night before, Jasper took off in what he believed to be west. He had to get back to the city soon, the mere amounts of provisions he had grabbed before fleeing had run out long ago and now there was this heaviness weighing down inside him. Wouldn't it be dangerous to return to the city? Where would he go? What if someone recognized him?

Jasper had water, it was all around him, he just had to scrape off the utter most layer of snow, fill his canteen and wait for it to melt. That wasn't the issue. The problem at hand was that he was literally starving. His stomach gurgled the first few days but eventually gave up, realizing that its futile attempts were worthless. At one point, he had tried to knock a bird out of a tree with some small rocks he found, but after about the third failed toss, the bird got the message and fluttered away.

Since then, he hadn't seen any signs of life and he worried about what would happen if he didn't get to food fast. Hell, at this point he'd rather be caught and taken back to prison. Really? This seems unlikely. At least then he'd know when he'd get his next mean, and there'd be a cot for him to sleep on, which was way better then being soaked to the bone.

"Come on man, stop that. Think about what your old man would say," He said aloud. "You're a fighter, you can do this, just a few more miles."

Out of nowhere, the faintest aroma of cooked meat washed over him. Washed is such an overused adverb, try to rephrase this in more of an original way. Turning his head, Jasper could see long fingers of smoke reach their way into the sky. Fingers of smoke, again an overused metaphor. Where there was smoke there was fire, and where there was fire, there was the chance of people. So Jasper turned back around, took another step then stopped. He knew he shouldn't risk the chance of being recognized, but he was so hungry and the smell of the cooking meat -what ever it was- which hit him stronger now, beckoned him forwards.

"Fuck it," he said.
Not a bad ending.

Overall, it appears your story is certainly progressing. Some of your prose and descriptions could use a little work and touch ups, though your dialogue is well done. I reiterate, if you want any help involving this project feel free to message me.
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Abby

Please don't hesitate to message me if you have any comments or questions, I'm always happy to talk about anything reading or writing related. If you want me to look at your writing just ask!
It is not hard to write what one feels as truth. It is damned hard to live by it.
-Eugene O'Neil to Alexander Berkman
I am also a major Tumblr addict and have a collection of quotes (reblogged and stockpiled over the course of five years) that you are welcome to peruse
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Old 09-05-2017, 12:26 AM View Post #3 (Link)
HawaiianParadise (Offline)
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Okay, so first of all, I think you have a really great premise. This chapter makes me want to read on, and to know the characters more. I want to know Jasper, I want to know who the heck the girl is and why she's there...I just plain want to read more of the story.

That said, there are a few errors that kind of take away from that. First:

Of course, that's not what the press got an ear-full of when the statement was made.

Do you mean earful?

Second:

"My father warned me about people like you, he said you're all worthless whores, scum, who don't deserve to live. None of you do," he said, waving the barrel of the riffle in the air before he settled it back on the girl in front of him.

Rifle only has one "f".

Third:

None the less, there Jasper was, handcuffed and swamped in the beige prison jumpsuit --two sizes too large-- running around the emptiness that is New Mexico.

Nonetheless is one word.

Your sentences are also a little choppy and hard to understand, like in this part:

She didn't plan on backing down. in fact, she knew that if she distracted him long enough, the police would be able to take him down -without harm coming to anyone preferably but if not, she was ready.

Sometimes you use too much detail and words that are unnecessarily descriptive. It gets a little confusing, like when you said Jasper was handcuffed and swamped in the beige prison jumpsuit. Think about J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter. She did use a lot of detail, yes, but only when she needed it to describe something that's a little hard for us Muggles to understand. And besides, she's J.K. Rowling.

"Fuck it," he said.

I like the ending. Please message me if you need any more critiquing.
  
						Last edited by HawaiianParadise; 09-05-2017 at 04:48 AM.
					
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