Saturday, August 7, 2010

High Drama Blogfest

The most awesome DL Hammons, is hosting a blogfest! A High Drama Blogfest, no less!
And since he was so encouraging, I've decided to participate.

The rules:

500 words or less (later amended to allow a few hundred more, which is good because mine is just over 700)

Drama. The word is Greek meaning "action", which is derived from "to do". Though its more common usage speaks to a specific mode of fiction represented in performances, it has also come to refer to a specific genre of fiction (neither comedy nor tragedy) involving a serious mood and conflict. That’s all just literary speak meaning drama simply covers a wide spectrum of contention, action crisis and atmosphere designed to amp up the stakes in our stories. It is an element of writing that transcends genre, so everybody can contribute.

And onto my entry!

This is a chunk taken from an action scene from an "on hold" WIP. I have also posted excerpts of this WIP here which is actually a scence shortly after this one. This is still first draft, though it has been spell checked, natch.

Here we go!

***

Cilka watched the wolves speak with Joachim and the others. There was no point in listening; Cilka knew the path this confrontation would lead. When their heart rates increased she growled softly to release the tension.

The wolves’ attention focused on her. Why hadn’t they taken stock of her before? Ahanu was a smart and observant wolf but he hadn’t even glanced at her.

Something was wrong.

The wolves attacked.

She expected them to attack Joachim and two did, knocking him into his sister. Joachim and Michelle fell to the ground in a heap of limbs. Gracie screamed and lifted Chris into her arms to shield the boy from attack. The third male tried to flank Cilka. She grabbed his throat and pulled him before her. He gagged, his eyes white and wide and she shoved him to the ground, but she knew he would be fighting again in a moment.

She assessed the situation. She could not protect Joachim and the others if she continued to play human.

Cilka forced her claws through her fingertips, and allowed her fur and teeth to erupt. Her tail added balance and her mane of dense, stiff quills grew from the top of her skull to her shoulders and from the middle of her back up to her neck. Where the mane crisscrossed it offered protection to her neck and her upper spine. No wolf would be able to bite through her vertebrae.

Ahanu and the second male tried to get past her to Gracie and Chris. The third male changed into his wolf form and lunged. Cilka prepared to knock him aside when Ahanu dropped to the ground and changed at her feet. He shoved her knees the same moment the lunging wolf hit her in the chest. The combined impact knocked Cilka off-balance and she stumbled into Gracie. Cilka’s back crashed against the concrete curb and knocked the breath from her lungs. Gracie landed atop her, unconscious. Ahanu lunged at Chris.

Joachim cried out but Ahanu did not kill the boy; instead he grabbed the boy’s jacket between his jaws.

Chris shrieked and Cilka reached for him but Ahanu snatched the boy and returned to the alley with the rest of his pack.

Cilka regained her breath and pushed Gracie aside. She checked the girl for injuries before she turned to the alley. Joachim and Michelle had already set after the wolves but Cilka knew the humans could not catch them before the river.

She dropped to her hands and feet and raced after them. She passed Joachim and Michelle in the alley and heard Joachim shout an encouragement. Onto the snow laden field she dug her claws into the earth and increased her speed.

Cilka had regained much of her strength since she’d escaped Bernard’s cell and though the situation was serious, she could not deny herself a moment of pleasure at the feeling of the earth beneath her feet and the smell of the snow.

Ahead, the wolves reached the river. Two of them jumped across without hesitation. The other two conversed for a moment and then, carrying Chris between, also made the jump.

Cilka reached the river bank and leapt after them, not quite sure what she would do on the other side in Darkholme, but knowing she had to at least make an attempt to save the boy.

Behind her sharp cracks echoed and something hot slammed into her thigh. She cried out and fell to the river below.

The water was fast this time of year and the river swallowed her whole, engulfing her with its icy flow. Heavy like a stone, the river tossed her about as she sank to the bottom. Here, the water dragged her along the bottom as her skin tore against rocks and wood hidden in the river’s depths. She slammed against a submerged tree and her body wedged against it, the water pushing and pulling against her.

The river had trapped her. Even if she were able to free herself, she carried too much weight to float to the surface and the water was too wild for her to reach the banks.

She was going to drown. Instead of burial in the earth, she would be food for the fish, her body feeding the river.

It was a terrible way to end all her long years.

***

So there you go. I hope it wasn't too confusing and junk.

Sarah out!

25 comments:

Lola Sharp said...

It wasn't confusing.
(I'm with her: fish bait is not the way I'd want to die either.)

Well done, Sarah.

Falen (Sarah) said...

thanks! And yeah, no thanks on the drowning

Summer said...

I love the description of her change--very interesting.

Great pacing--I want to know what happens!

Mac said...

I jumped over here after seeing you followed Claudia immediatly after I had...then I HAD to follow you because you're a dog lover. I have three rescues, and if you visit my web site or blog...you'll see they get included TOO, from time to time. Regards, Mac

Courtney Barr - The Southern Princess said...

I am with Summer - the pace is wonderful!!!

This one was a lot of fun!

Wonderful entry!

Visit My Kingdom Anytime

Elaine AM Smith said...

It was dramatic and exciting.
She doesn't end up as fish bait. She gets out of this? I was left feeling I wanted to know more.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

I love the character names and your use of description. The tension was awesome, Falen! I want to read more. :-)

Holly Ruggiero, Southpaw said...

Full of high drama for sure. I need to know what happens too.

DL Hammons said...

*sigh* Here I am, left hanging yet again!! :) Great scene with excellent descriptions and compelling action. What an awesome contribution!! Thank you. :)

Elle Strauss said...

Thanks for sharing! Fun to read. I hope things do work out for her in the end!

Summer Ross said...

I adore the names you used. Thank you for posting for reading pleasure, :)

Francine said...

Hi,

I loved this (but then I have a wolf-hybrid) so it resonates a little regarding wolf behaviour, wild spirit and calculated thinking!!

I'm not a fan of shape-shifting and werewolf themes, but this snippet itself is wonderful and Cilka I'm guessing will survive!

best
F

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

Excellent, fast paced action! I've read excerpts from this one before, I think. The characters came right back to me :)

Loved the moment she fell into the river. Very descriptive; I could picture it perfectly.

Thanks for sharing!!

February Grace said...

I think I counted seven character names in the excerpt, I was wondering who everybody was and how they figured in to the overall story. Wondering is good!

Very fast paced, great entry for the fest!

Oh, and I covet your steampunk hat. And I don't generally covet, usually. Covet is just not me, but that is one damn cool hat.

bru

Kelly Dexter said...

I didn't find it confusing at all. You have excellent descriptions; I had a clear picture of the setting at all times.

Also, Darkholme is an awesome name :-)

j.leigh.bailey said...

That was great. I'm biased, anything with a shifter of some sort is good with me, but I was completely taken in. So, any chance of seeing the rest of that "on-hold" MS? ... :D

Falen (Sarah) said...

Summer - thanks!

Mac - Ha! And i'll come check you out right now!

Courtney - thanks so much! And thanks for stopping by!

Elaine - no worries, she does get out of this situation

Shannon - i love picking character names and really like the ones i have on this WIP

Holly - i was a bit worried it was too much action and not enough drama, but it's all i had time to scrap together

DL - heh, sorry. Awesome blogfest, though. the entries have been great

Elle - they do indeed. I'm generally a happyish ending sort of person

Summer Rose - thanks! for one of the characters in this WIP, he went through 4-5 name changes, which was crazy

Francine - thanks! i always try to make cilka have calculated thinking and speech patterns because she's not human so i'm glad you picked up on that

February - you have an AWESOME name - and yeah, i tried to look for a better excerpt with less people, but this one just seemed to be the best fit for the blogfest.

Kelly - thanks! And setting is something that is always a struggle for me so i'm glad it worked ok for you

J.leigh - i, too, am biased with shifters cuz i love them. And i have promised my writing group that i would finish it, so perhaps in the future...

Mac said...

Hi!

Thanks for dropping by My Writing Prompt

:O) Regards, Mac

Portia said...

Wow, an action-packed drama filled piece! Lots to enjoy here. I'm rooting for her!

—Portia

Falen (Sarah) said...

Mac - no problem!

Portia - thanks!

L'Aussie said...

Sarah, a wonderful piece, so descriptive and hard hitting. Great entry..:)

SonshineMusic i.e. Rebecca T. said...

I agree! that was great and not confusing. I remember reading the other excerpt and I enjoyed this one as well :)

Teebore said...

You damn well better finish this someday. Palindrome and I are hanging more than anyone!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Took me a moment to figure it out, but I was right there. Now I need to know if she survives!

Falen (Sarah) said...

L'Aussie - thanks!

Sonshine - that's good, thanks

Teebore - well Anne too...

L. Diane - she does indeed

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