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Rise of the Zunallin King

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Rise of the Zunallin King

Postby Barraclough » Fri Feb 16, 2007 3:36 am

hey this is my first post, bit nervous to be honest. any feedback would be most welcome.

Tales of Neogosis

The Rise Of The Zunallin King

Jialendim was just a normal everyday Neogosian blacksmith, skilled in the art of weapon forging and in the art of war. But today was different, today he stood on the vast plains of Geosant, as he did on that same day every year, for the last one hundred and seventeen years. Those plains were once the stage of the bloodiest battle in the history of Neogosis and he was a surviving veteran who saw many perish on that day.

As he stood, remembering friends of old, allegiances that were forged upon that day, a kindly mother and her young son approached him.

‘Mother, what is that man doing?’ the young lad asked, as children often do.

‘He is just standing and clearing his mind my dear, now don’t stare, it is very rude,’ the Mother answered as they walked past,

‘actually marm, I was remembering the comrades that I lost upon this very field, over one hundred years ago.’ he corrected her with a bow.

‘You were a Warrior in that forsaken battle?’ she asked in awe.

‘Aye. If you so desire, I can tell you of the events of that day. It may prove to be an experience for your inquisitive son.’

‘Oh please sir! Please tell me your story!’ the boy begged.

‘As you wish, though you may want to get comfortable, it is a long story, filled with joy, grief and sorrow.’ he warned.

* * *

‘I remember it well, it was in times of great evil. At the time we did not know of the terrible army that was coming our way, but then, it was the Dark Times, when royalty did not exist and the peoples were scattered and divided, fighting amongst themselves to stay alive. It was nine days before midsummer when the small skirmish band of the Dark Warrior Chamarl struck our village, killing many, but luckily not all because our village warriors were returning from a border dispute, so we managed to fight them off, but not before our chieftain was slain, along with my close friend, whom I saw fall, moments before the cowardly scum fled!’ here Jialendim paused, hearing a group of youths approaching.

‘Hello, what have we got here, if it isn’t old Jialendim the metal beater!’ one of the youths joked.

‘You young rascals!’ he laughed ‘I am just telling these a story, a story of war and honour that a group of miscreants can learn from, now sit and listen,’ he ordered and they obeyed, curious to hear stories of the past, ‘as I was saying, after the skirmish party fled, my friend’s life left him as he lay in my arms, it was on that day that I swore vengeance for his memory.’

‘Two days after the burial of the fallen, a great host of fighters approached our village and we despaired, for against such a large force we stood no chance, but luckily we had no need to panic because it was the host of Ardellian, leader of the United Peoples of Neogosis. He assisted us with the repair of our village and told us of the fortune we had that it was not the main host of Chamarl that had attacked, then he told us of his quest to destroy Chamarl and his army and he asked us to join the cause.’

‘Did you?’ one of the youths interrupted.

‘Please remain silent so that your elder may continue!’ the mother snapped.

‘Thank you marm. Of course we joined him, he filled us with such confidence and hope, that we felt inclined to fight alongside him. Well you can imagine our surprise when he ordered the march as soon as we agreed and off we went, myself ahead of the rest of the host as scout, along with the rest of our village warriors, seeing as we knew the are better than most.’

‘Three days out from the village, we encountered a group of Chamarl’s fighters and much to my happiness, it was the very group that attacked my village. You can envisage the carnage that followed. After sending our youngest back to report to Ardellian, we charged the enemy taking them by surprise. So fierce was our assault, by the time they had picked up their swords, we were upon them taking out many before they could flee. It was there that I fulfilled my oath to my friend by hewing the head off of his killer, who unknown to me was the group leader. My actions ended that skirmish in a victory for us, but a heavy price, out of fifty warriors twelve died, which was more than could be said for the enemy, who only had twelve remaining by the time we had finished.’

‘Not long after the fight, the host of Ardellian arrived and he was overjoyed yet grieved to see that we had won, but with such losses. Our scouting party were then invited into Ardellian’s tent to eat and witness the interrogation of the surviving Dark Warriors.’

‘The following day, just before dawn, we were on the march once more following the dark Warriors as they were forced to jog ahead and lead the way to the main host of Chamarl. Such was the pace that they led us, that after a day and a night of marching we saw the dust cloud of the horde ahead of us, but much to Ardellian’s anger, we had been spotted and Chamarl was ready and waiting for us and it was on this very day, at roughly this time, that the bloody battle took place.’

‘even though the army that followed Ardellian was in the thousands, Chamarl’s horde was almost twice the size. Now that daunt the most faint hearted of people, but not Ardellian. He had a score to settle and a oath to fulfil and by the will of Shallen, he was going to do it. Such an atmosphere I will never experience again, the chilling silence as both forces stood opposite each other ready to fight, then the blood curdling roars as two titanic armies collided in a hate filled frenzy. It was a terrible experience, fighting and killing your own kinsman and I will never forget the images that day as I saw many a brave fighter fall to the harsh ferocity of the Dark Warriors, who in return fell at twice the rate because the United Peoples were fighting for a cause, not some mad mans pleasure.’

‘The battle raged on for many hours and in its final stages events began to unfold in our favour, until Chamarl’s elite joined the fray, taking the lives of many, I myself was almost included in the fallen,’

‘how do you mean?’ the kindly lady asked in complete confusion.

‘The elite warriors were homing in on Ardellian, I know because I was fighting close to him for a majority of that day. Some of them managed to get through to him and they fought with cold fury, it was then that I saw one of them charge at Ardellian’s back and I made a brave stand before him, piercing his heart but in his death throes he rendered me unconscious and remember little of the battle after that point.’ Jialendim explained.

‘Anyway, when I came to, I was lying in a tent and Lord Ardellian, as he was known after the battle, was stood over me, a loo of relief on his face,

‘I am relieved to see you awake again my friend, I would not want to have to thank my saviour on his tombstone,’ he said to me, then he told me all of what happened after I fell. Apparently the forces of Chamarl fled, completely decimated and disheartened, but our survivors did not give chase because of great weariness and Ardellian declared that he would end things once all was mended on Geosant.’

‘After the funeral for the fallen warriors, Ardellian offered me the position of Captain in his Army, but I regretfully refused the offer, no longer desiring to witness any more bloodshed and so I returned to my village alone, being the sole survivor of our warriors. To this day I remember the promise I made to the Zunallin, the promise that if ever he needed my services again, I would answer the summons and fight by his side again, or the aide of any Zunallin that follows in his stead.’

‘Did you ever have to fight alongside him again?’

‘Yes, I did. We rode to war together to end the affairs with Chamarl at his stronghold, but that is a story for another time,’ Jialendim replied,

‘that is amazing! You have survived two of the bloodiest wars battles in history!’ a youth commented in complete awe.

‘And became close friends with the King Ardellian Zunallin in the process. I am still held in high regard at Cimbas Enthil and will always be called upon by the future kings until my life is ended.’ Jialendim explained grimly.

‘Can you tell us of the final battle against Chamarl? Please?’ the young boy asked.

‘Not today. Maybe when it is the anniversary day. But until then do as your mother asks and respect your elders, then maybe you too could gain the qualities to fight for the freedom of the Neogosians,’

‘when is that?’ the group of youths asked in dismay.

‘Come and see me on the fifteenth day of the Re-birth season and you will learn of what it takes to be a warrior!’ Jialendim called as he made his long way home.
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Postby Bmat » Fri Feb 16, 2007 2:38 pm

The introduction grabs the attention of the reader, in a relaxed fashion. That the mother and child are approaching him means to me that they wish to encounter him. Yet, we see they speak about, not to, him and are actually intending to walk past. Whether the mother is "kindly" is subjective, we can't know this by just seeing her.

You use the word "time" three times very closely, so you may want to change some of them.

The peoples were scattered and divided. I know what you are saying, but you may want "people" instead, just my opinion.

telling these a story- I understand it is a stylized way of speaking, but even so it comes across as a bit belittling. So maybe it should be something such as "these good folks" etc.

By the time we get to the paragraph beginning "Three days out.." the story seems to be getting draggy, even though you have tried to avoid this by having the light interchange among the characters.

the kindly lady... again, how do we know she was kindly? Perhaps she asked this kindly.

a loo of relief on his face, -typo

his long way home... instead of telling us it is a long way, show us, or omit the word.

The story got quite draggy, but then, battle scenes are not my favorite, so this is obviously only one opinion. I like the tone of the story, and I think you are a good storyteller.

I am not sure what to suggest about keeping the reader's attention (particularly a reader who is not a fan of battle scenes) unless you could let the story drift into action instead of narrative, with returns from time to time to the speaker and his audience.

Good luck with this. I am interested in the story. You are doing well with your writing.
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Re: Rise of the Zunallin King

Postby clknaps » Fri Feb 16, 2007 10:42 pm

hey this is my first post, bit nervous to be honest. any feedback would be most welcome.
Welcome to the forum, Barraclough! Thank you for posting this for us. No need to be nervous, we won't bite. :)


Jialendim was just a normal, (commas to separate adjectives) everyday Neogosian blacksmith, skilled in the art of weapon forging and in the art of war. But today was different, today he stood on the vast plains of Geosant, as he did on that same day every year, for the last one hundred and seventeen years.

I'd like a wee bit more info on why today was different. As we read on, we learn that this is no average blacksmith, but at this point in the story that is not so clear. How about, "But today was different, today he was no mere blacksmith, today he stood again on the vast plains..." Just a suggestion.



As he stood, remembering friends of old, allegiances that were forged upon that day, a kindly mother and her young son approached him.

She can't be kindly unless he knows her to be kindly. A friendly-looking woman? A kindly mother he recognized, something like that.


‘He is just standing and clearing his mind my dear, now don’t stare, it is very rude,’ the Mother answered as they walked past, (no need for comma here, should be a period unless you are trying to indicate an interruption).


‘actually marm, I was remembering the comrades that I lost upon this very field, over one hundred years ago.’ he corrected her with a bow.


of the Dark Warrior (Dark Warrior being cap'ed here indicates a title not just a description) Chamarl struck our village, killing many,

‘You young rascals!’ he laughed ‘I am just telling these (would suggest deleting the word these here) a story, a story of war and honour (British spelling of the word here, might be a stumble to your American audience) that a group of miscreants can learn from, now sit and listen,’ he ordered and they obeyed, curious to hear stories of the past, ‘as I was saying, after the skirmish party fled, my friend’s life left him as he lay in my arms, it was on that day that I swore vengeance for his memory.’

Second time you mention his best friend and I was surprised that he never mentions his name. A best friend would name his fallen comrade I think.

He assisted us with the repair of our village and told us of the fortune we had that it was not the main host of Chamarl that had attacked, and then he told us of his quest to destroy Chamarl and his army and he asked us to join the cause.’ (grammar rule, whenever you have a comma and then a 'then' you need an "and" in there.)


village warriors, seeing as we knew the are (area, typo) better than most.’

‘Three days out from the village, we encountered a group of Chamarl’s fighters and much to my happiness, it was the very group that attacked my village. You can envisage (transitive verb, too formal to be used here. Suggest imagine) the carnage that followed.
It was there that I fulfilled my oath to my friend by hewing the head off of his killer, who unknown to me, (thought must be separated by two commas) was the group leader. My actions ended that skirmish in a victory for us, but at a heavy price, out of fifty warriors twelve died, which was more than could be said for the enemy, who only had twelve remaining by the time we had finished.’

‘Not long after the fight, the host of Ardellian arrived and he was overjoyed yet grieved to see that we had won, but with such losses. Our scouting party were (was, party singular) then invited into Ardellian’s tent to eat and to witness the interrogation of the surviving Dark Warriors.’


‘even though the army that followed Ardellian was in the thousands, Chamarl’s horde was almost twice the size. Now that might or would daunt the most faint hearted of people, but not Ardellian. He had a score to settle and a oath to fulfil (spelling fulfill) and by the will of Shallen, he was going to do it. Such an atmosphere I will never experience again, the chilling silence as both forces stood opposite each other ready to fight, then the blood curdling roars as two titanic armies collided in a hate filled frenzy. It was a terrible experience, fighting and killing your own kinsman and I will never forget the images that day as I saw many a brave fighter fall to the harsh ferocity of the Dark Warriors, who in return fell at twice the rate because the United Peoples were fighting for a cause, not some mad man's pleasure.’

This above, IMHO, is your best paragraph. Very well done, a good visual picture and not too wordy.




‘The elite warriors were homing in on Ardellian, I know because I was fighting close to him for a majority of that day. Some of them managed to get through to him and they fought with cold fury, it was then that I saw one of them charge at Ardellian’s back and I made a brave stand before him, piercing his heart but in his death throes he rendered me unconscious and I remembered little of the battle after that point.’ Jialendim explained.

‘Anyway, when I came to, I was lying in a tent and Lord Ardellian, as he was known after the battle, was stood over me, a loo (typo look) of relief on his face,

To this day I remember the promise I made to the Zunallin, the promise that if ever he needed my services again, I would answer the summons and fight by his side again, or any Zunallin that follows in his stead.’ (extra words deleted).




‘Not today. Maybe when it is the anniversary day. But until then do as your mother asks and respect your elders, then maybe you too could gain the qualities to fight for the freedom of the Neogosians,’ (another comma to indicate an interruption?)

‘when is that?’ the group of youths asked in dismay.

‘Come and see me on the fifteenth day of the Re-birth season and you will learn of what it takes to be a warrior!’ Jialendim called as he made his long way home.[/quote]


Ok- overall I enjoyed this piece (I like reading battle scenes). :) I would like to see a bit more description of action in the present time though. For example at the end here, we don't know Jialendim is walking away until the very end of the sentence. I'd like an indication of that before hand. Also there are some good opportunities to add description during the present dialog, would like more about the main character and maybe even a bit about the youths and the mother/son. We know nothing of what they look like.

Good piece, you should be please with you have so far. Thanks for sharing this with us. CLK
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Postby Qray » Sat Feb 17, 2007 12:52 am

Welcome to SV, Barraclough.

I agree the beginning of the story grabs the reader in a relaxed fashion.

I thought the same thing as Bmat that some points of the battle description drag. Even with the mother and child's interaction during it's telling. For me there seemed to be too much formality in the telling.

A nit-picky thing. You use "it is" a few times when the contraction "it's" would read better and make the sentences flow easier. It's something I have to remind myself to do when I reread my own stuff. I end up doing the same thing.

It's good story. I look forward to reading more of your work.
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