Welcome, welcome, everyone... to Losersville!
Yeah, you heard me right! Losersville. A town where there is no winner. NONE. Why? Well in case you don't know what's going on here and just... stumbled into this pathetically hopeless town of despair, here's what it's all about:
Shizuran-Project Debut Writing Contest
Still doesn't explain anything? Then buzz off.
Kidding, all the more you're welcome here to become a loser like us. :)
Well basically, some of the losers in this contest have decided to post their fics up in a thread once the winner have decided while the *coughs* poor *coughs* winner would have to wait till their doujin/manga is complete. Although there isn't one yet, we all know who has lost already, so...
LOSERS! PRESENT YOUR POSTS! And readers, enjoy! ;)
So... Is this going to be a collection of Shizuran-Project's rejected (for lack of better wording) stories? ^^"
Lol. Ouch, that's harsh. ^^"
Anyways, here's my review for your story:
That aside, Thank you very much for participating in this, Maddy. ^^ I hope you had fun with it.
And~ If you'd like, I can give you the other admins' reviews, as well. They were all required to write one. But, whether you want them to give it to you directly is your call.
Alright. Here you go~ ^^
Sha: Wonderful and I await another piece from you. Tis’ been a while since I’ve read something that made me feel that relaxed in a very long time and I’ll probably re-read it whenever I feel down! XD
Nanoha: Creative and I loved how you added some drama in the end.
Sammie: I had fun reading this one. Shiro was funny.
Let me see... ... ...
-Comprehension: 6 points.
It was a little hard to follow seeing as there were no spaces separating the paragraphs. I dont know if thats how you wrote it or thats how the forums made it out to be but it was a little bit hard to read as such. I had to reread several paragraphs over again since I lost my place just from scrolling the text
-Detail: 7 points.
The detail was good in identifying certain aspects of the story. Most of us get more plot driven than detail driven so we tend to end up showing the readers only what they need to. Overall the amount presented was good and with some refinement, would be much better.
-Plot: 8 points.
The story taking place as a calm, relaxed tone was nice. The title makes you think of a cinderella-type storyline and it was carried out well. The only issue present was the ending (which will be discussed later on under a different placement). The advancement was good and the direction didnt sidetrack you to other things.
-Characters: 7 Points.
Character development was a little rough, but then again this story was designed with people who are already familiar with the series in mind. The characters were placed within their roles, but it was nice to see them growing a little bit past their "sanctioned" roles that everyone is used to.
-Creativity: 6 Points.
The flow of the romance seemed a little awkward at points and sometimes made you wonder "Aren't these two dating?" Maybe it wasnt clear how long they have been going out, but at least they shouldnt be acting like complete newbies when it comes to being around each other. After all, going out with someone means that you've known them for quite some time and are comfortable around them to a certain point.
-English: 7 points.
Aside from some spelling, grammar, and the spacing issue I mentioned above, there isnt much wrong with the English segment. It could use from refining by a beta reader and certainly has room to grow.
-Originality: 7 points.
A prom night! Not that many out there, but also could be said that its too "common" a setting especially when you have a large universe to play with since you involved magic and "saving the world" and devices.
-Ending: 5 points.
The ending was rather abrubt and didnt seem to sit well with the rest of the story itself. It would almost seem like you hit the character limit and had to terminate it somehow or else risk being disqualified. You probably should have just gone on and finished it the way you had originally intented (if it was another way) and just told them that it was over by a little bit. They would have let it go unless you were planning on adding another 10k words at the end of it.
-Customized/Blank: I will make this one my own setting and put it as Feel: 8 points.
Looking at this from a third person's point of view I can tell that there was some effort placed into this story. It wasnt done in 15 mins (like one of the stories we have) and it shows that thought was placed in it instead of just the want of the reward.
-Connection: 7 points.
The direction of the story going from home to vehicle to prom was done well. The transitions were shot and almost unnoticeable. I cant speak for everyone, but some people like being able to just go from one place to another without having to consciously know that they have moved. However others like to know "how you got there" instead of just magically appearing at the next location.
Total Active Score: 68 points.
Oh well~ I guess it's time to post our story here as well xD
This is the edited version, the one that took part in the contest. You can find the alternate one posted on FF.net. Have fun~
- Yui Moonlight
- Silber-1 aka Major Mike Powell III
Oh, I'm attaching the story in .pdf format since the site screws up formatting pretty badly ~.~
Here are your team's reviews: =3
Nanoha: I must say, this was an amazing fic. Never have I read something like this before, it was both creative and amazingly written. I can’t wait to read more from this group. I hope you create lots of awesome works!
Sammie: Nice work.
Sha: Your story was a pleasant read and had some deeper thoughts of the character portrait nicely. Keep up the good work you three and deliver something like this (stories with an inner conflict that can only be consulted by the past itself) again, maybe with a different pairing? Leaves open more options and adds a little more fun to everything XD
Kail-Mello: The idea was new and unique. I mean, not everyone takes time to go in-depth in terms of Hayate’s love life. Especially not with the most popular Nanoha couple. I found it interesting, even if the couple itself is not one of my most favored couple. Kudos. ^^ Job well done.
Now that that's out of the way, you were asking about the DA site's archive, right? Thing is, I can't add it if you don't have it on there. XD Lol. So, yeah~ You need to post it in your Sta.sh before we can put in the group's web page.
Lastly~ =3 Thanks for the participation. ^^ Hopefully, you guys had fun with it... Lol. Did you? XD
Thanks for the reviews~
And oh, does it work this way? D8 Okay, I'll post it when I come back from uni ^^;
Huh, I guess so xD
Behold, non-boxes! Literary doom! In a world where no one knows what they're doing (even me), can truth and justice triumph against accidentally evil? One lone knight stands against the terrors of overly complicated bureaucracy in a tale that isn't this one.
Instead, here's something about trains.
And~ Here're your reviews, Natus~ ^^ Thanks for taking part in the contest and I hope you had fun! X3
Nanoha: This was honestly the most interesting story I’ve read. Not with plot or character, but because you had to stop at every sentence and had to figure out what just happened. And I say this all in a good way.
Sammie: It was a good and funny story overall.
Sha: Keep up the first person point of view! You’re really good and I kinda want to read the continuation of this piece! Please tell me how it ends XD
Kail-Mello: Wow… Nice job. :D This was really enjoyable for me. Very different and unique. *nods* I had a good laugh while reading this, so thanks for the great story. ^^ I think this is the best original story I’ve ever read. XD
Here ish ze other storeh~
“Fate...” A voice went through the blond's mind as she lay in bed. “Fate...” It repeated itself, trying to gain access to the girl's consciousness.
“Mo...ther...” She called out, recognizing the voice.
“Fate...” It repeated. “If you are truly a child of the Testarossa family...you will never fail in your objectives...”
“What...do you mean...mother?” She called out in her sleep, not knowing it was all a dream.
“!!!” Red eyes snapped open as its owner drew a loud gasp. “Wha...what was that?” She sat up quickly and looked at her surroundings, her body dripping in sweat. “A dream...” She sighed to herself and lay back down, letting the blanket off of her heated body. “Why now...?” She questioned as she looked at the clock as it read 07:25. “Gah!!!” She jumped up when she realized what it said. “Why now?!?!” She yelled as she got herself dressed in a speed that rivaled her fastest running time. “Ah, crap, I'm late!!!” She bolted to and from the bathroom as she tried to brush her teeth, fix her hair, throw on her uniform, adjust her ribbon, rub the sleepiness off her features, and try not to swallow the toothpaste.
Today was the beginning of the second semester at the school and even though she had enjoyed the vacation, she couldn’t bring herself to fall asleep last night. After all... she had just done that to Nanoha.
“Ahhh... Carim-sensei is going to be so pissed...” She grabbed her bag and ran out the door while trying to put her shoes on. “Man what a bad time to sleep in.” She cursed herself as she bolted full speed towards the school. If there was one thing she was confident in, it was her speed. She was the ace of the track team and their main anchor, if there was one thing she was good at, this was it.
“7...6...5...4...” The second hand of the clock ticked ever closer as Signum stood at the gate and began to close it. She glanced over her shoulder as she casually pushed, noting a cloud of dust getting larger and larger.
“Full power!” Fate yelled at herself as she put more energy into her legs and leaped, no, VAULTED over the closing gate and landed on the other side with a slide. “SAFE!” She cried out as she stood up and performed a Final Fantasy victory stance while the music played in the background (courtesy of the gaming club, mind you~).
Cheers and applause greeted her from the classroom windows as students who witnessed the event gave their support. The guys whistled while the girls gave their classic “Kyaaa~ Testarossa-sama~!” admiration.
“Thank you!” Fate bowed. “Thank you!” She turned to each building and repeated the process. “Glad to have made it.”
“You may have made it to school on time.” Signum interrupted her from the side. “But you're late for homeroom.”
“Geh!” Fate's face twisted in shock as the homeroom bell sounded.
“As punishment, you have to clean out the school shed today.”
“Hai...” The blond sighed as trudged her way into the school building. “Well at least I can get that done during lunch or something.” She cheered herself up as she switched shoes at the locker. “If I stay too late, I might get fired from work” She scared herself with that small notion and ran towards the classroom.
“Nanoha...” Fate called out once the lunch bell rang.
“...” The brunette's expression remained unreadable since her bangs covered her eyes.
“Nanoha?” She stepped closer to grab the girl's attention only to find herself watching her target run off into the hallway.
“So, how did it go?” Hayate's voice crept up from behind the blond less than a moment later.
“Ugh...” Fate responded, which gave more answer than anything else she could have said.
“Fate-chan, Fate-chan, Fate-chan...” Hayate exaggeratedly shook her head. “You need to be more aggressive with that girl.” She sighed. “You will never get anywhere with her if you just keep being passive!”
“I've known Nanoha-chan for a long time now.” Hayate continued. “She is the type you have to chase after! If you don't do it, she'll just get bored of you.”
“There is no way she is that kind of girl, Hayate.” Fate sighed and held her head.
“Well, when she rejected you-”
“SHE DID NOT REJECT ME!” She flailed her arms in anger and denial. “She just ran away!”
“Right.” Hayate's eyebrow twitched. “When she...refused to answer,” She started again “she basically was testing you to see if you'd chase her.”
“Ha?” confusion evident in her tone.
“It's a test, my dear Testarossa.” Hayate grinned mischievously. “If you go after her, it tells her that you are serious about it- that you are willing to go the extra mile for her. If you remain passive and apologize to her, it tells her that you don't care enough about her.”
“...” Despite her silence, Fate began to see the point.
“Take my advice, Fate Testarossa.” She used the full name for added effect. “You have to go after her like a predator. She likes playing the role of the target-she lives for the thrill of the chase. Trust me on this as your best friend.” She gave her greatest smile. “Or is the great heir of the Testarossa family scared of a little action?” She teased.
“Ok...” Fate gave a crooked smile. “What do I need to do?”
“Well, first you need the proper setting.” Hayate opened her notebook that contained hundreds of thousands of situations to get the person you are going for. Ironically it was labeled “Hayate's Flower Bed”.
“For those of you who didn't know,” Fate looked towards the audience. “Hayate is a sexual deviant. She excels in capturing cute girls that suit her tastes.”
“Who are you talking to, Fate-chan?” Hayate glanced over her shoulder. “Are you paying attention? This is important!”
“Ah, sorry sorry.” The blond shook her hands and looked at the notebook as the two of them formulated a plan.
“Hrmmm...” Nanoha dug through the boxes inside the shed. “Where is it?” She sighed to herself. Hayate was given a task to look for something inside the school's storage shed, but she had something to do. “I do owe her one but...” The brunette bit her lip slightly at the job that she was forced into.
The door slowly opened as someone walked inside, Nanoha did not even noticing their presence as she continued to look through all the different boxes and equipment that were scattered in this black hole known as the school's storage shed.
“...” The intruder remained silent as a soft *click* echoed through the large area noting that the door had been closed once again.
“...?” Nanoha's eyes immediately darted towards the noise and widened once she saw who was standing there in front of it. “Fate-chan...” She looked away slightly, guilt written all over her face.
“Nanoha...” Fate took a step forward, her eyes sharp like knives. “I've come for your answer.” She took several more steps. “And even if you don't respond...” She came to a stop several feet from her target “I'll just ask your body.” An evil looking grin formed on her face as her tongue licked her lips.
Alarms went off inside Nanoha's head as she surveyed the situation. All she knew was: This was Fate, at the same time not quite Fate. This person had a scary look in their eyes that denoted something really bad would happen if she were to get too close.
“W-what are you talking about, Fate-chan?” She took a step back.
“Takamachi Nanoha...” The blond declared “You are my target. As a member of the Testarossa Family, I always fulfill my objectives.”
“Ask my body?” She repeated. “You...you don't mean-!” Her mind raced as to what to do, she had to get out of there as soon as possible and get this girl some help, but could she outrun the school's track ace? No, she had to.
“Come now, Nanoha~” Fate began advancing forward slowly. “Don't worry, I'll be nice.”
“!!!” Nanoha took a breath and charged in an arch around the area and bolted towards the door. “Fate-chan, you need to cool your head some.” Her panic subsiding as she reached for the handle. “Maybe you should go get some help from the doctor or something.” She tried to open the door but realized that it was locked. “Eh??” She turned around and faced her opponent. “Fate-chan!”
“Hey now.” The red-eyed girl raised her hands. “I am inside also. How do you expect me to lock this thing from here?”
“So now we're stuck here!” Anger started showing in her voice.
“Now, now.” She tried to pacify the situation. “It's almost time to go home. Once they notice we are missing from the last homeroom, they'll start looking for us.”
“Eh?” That was right. Nanoha didn't consider the fact that others would come looking for them if they didn't show up. After all, they still had afternoon duties to attend to.
“That being said,” Fate's eyes sharpened once again. “I don't really have much time left.” She reached for the ribbons holding her hair in twin-tails and let them loose. “Guess that means I'll just have to hurry~”
The anger she felt dissipated as fear took over her once again. The sight of Fate with her hair down was just utterly beautiful, however the sinister look in her eyes made her both more appealing and downright dangerous.
“Wh-what are you doing, Fate-chan?” She asked, already knowing the answer.
“What do you think people do inside the school area that no one comes to~?” She grinned and took a step forward. “Come on now~ even you should have some idea of what goes on in here~”
“Get back!” Nanoha raised a ball between the two of them, her mind racing as to what to do next. The girl before her had gone completely crazy and her chastity was in danger at this rate.
“...” Fate just smiled and continued to slowly take steps forward. Her grin widened once Nanoha started throwing all kinds of items at her ranging from basketballs to tennis rackets.
“No way!” Nanoha thought to herself as Fate continued to slowly advance, deflecting everything that was thrown at her in a way similar to how Wonder Woman would be deflecting bullets! “How is that even possible?!” She thought. “Oi, you don't have time to think about that! You have to get out of here!” Her mind reminded her of her current predicament. She looked around and noticed a small window that was a little out of her reach. If she had a running start...
“Give it up, Nanoha.” Fate stopped several feet away. “You can't escape.”
“Ha!!!” The brunette threw a large number of books and magazines (which appeared to be erotic ones, for some reason) at her opponent.
“Too childish.” Fate shook her head and swung her hand in an arch while a flash of light cut all the items heading towards her into numerous pieces. “Huh, these super techniques come in handy~ I don't have to explain how it works and everyone just accepts them hehe~” She opened her eyes and was about to make a comment when she noticed that there was no one in her line of vision.
“Haaaaaa!” Nanoha screamed as she ran full blitz towards the window and jumped, her hand reaching out but not being enough. “Ugh!”she grunted as she landed just shy of her objective.
“Ho ho~ You thought you could escape that way, huh?” The blond slowly made her way over.
“Full power!” Nanoha yelled out as she gained some distance and ran towards the wall once again. This time, however, she jumped on one of the volleyballs that were scattered all over the floor and used it as a platform in a final desperate attempt. A sense of relief came over her when her hands reached the bars of the window. She tried to pull herself up, but those said bars broke loose and forced the girl holding them to fall on her back on the ground.
Fate casually walked up within three feet of her target and smiled with an aura of victory. “That's too bad, isn't it~?” She took a step as Nanoha crawled backwards. “No more tricks?” She taunted as she dropped to her knees and pinned her target's wrists on the ground, guaranteeing superiority. “Now you're mine~”
Nanoha's eyes widened in shock as Fate's lips slowly started getting closer and closer, her mind raced in a panic as she had nothing left that she could do. She closed her eyes tightly and waited and...waited?
Nanoha opened her eyes slowly to the feel of liquid falling on her cheeks. She looked up at the girl above her and noticed tears falling down her face.
“I...can't do it.” Fate sobbed. “I just can't do it.” She repeated. “I am so sorry, Nanoha...I'm sorry.” She raised herself up and turned her back.
“Fate-chan...” She repeated. “I'm sorry too...” She looked at her hands. “I'm sorry I didn't give you an answer...I was just-”
“No!” Fate spun around. “It's entirely my fault. I shouldn't have done that. I wanted to let you know how I felt, but I didn't take your feelings into consideration. I am not surprised that you ran away. I am so sorry for trying to force an answer out of you like this-” She spoke so fast she could barely keep up with it herself.
“It's my fault.” Nanoha repeated and shook her head. “I am sorry I ran from you. I didn't really understand it at the time. My heart was racing and I felt like I was going to choke with excitement when you said that to me. I ran... because I was scared. Scared that our relationship would change so much that things would be incredibly awkward.” She frowned at herself. “That is why I ran...I know I hurt you really badly. I'm sorry.”
“I'm sorry for what happened just now too...” Fate's face turned bright red as she remembered all that she did. “I thought that you were the type that wanted to be chased and I was at a loss for what to do and so-”
*clank!* A noise interrupted her as something in the far corner fell.
“???” The two of them looked at each other before going over there and discovering one Yagami Hayate hiding with a camcorder in her hands.
“I knew it!” Nanoha pointed. “This was one of your tricks! This had 'Hayate-chan' written all over it!”
“Ahahahaha~” The Kansai girl laughed at the situation. “Um... hi~” She sheepishly pressed STOP on her camcorder. “I can explain!” She began.
“Hoo?” Fate cracked her knuckles. “Start explaining!”
“If we like your answer...” Nanoha continued. “We'll let you live.” Her eyes narrowed in a way that only demons would do so towards their prey.
Hayate took in a deep breath, her face plastered a look of pure horror as the two shadows closed in on her.
~~ Ze end ~~
Ali, here is your set of reviews. ^^ Despite how on short notice it was, you still turned something in. Lol. 15 minutes works wonders on your writing. XD Anyways, thanks so much for participating in this... especially since I practically dragged you into this. ^^" Ehehe. I appreciate it, honest. X3
Nanoha: This was very Alicia-like. It was crazy and unpredictable, but in a good way.
Sammie: I really love this story.
Sha: Your genre, your home, your Alma Matter will always be angsty stories with a happy end! Tearjerkers and Nervwreckers are your speciallity and not some attempt to lighten the mood with bad jokes at the very end, that felt strange XP
Kail-Mello: I knew there was going to be a demented twist to this story somewhere. XD I mean, you wrote it. I shouldn’t be so surprised. Anyways~ This was enjoyable. =3 Fate is really funny in this fic. She’s goofy but can be serious. Yep~ And Nanoha was… well, I had a good laugh seeing her reactions. Lol. I’m mean.
Ok here we go again ... ... ...
-Comprehension: 7 points.
It was...*ahem* weird to put it in best terms. I found myself going "ha?" several times, it took a little bit but once it started going, the story became easier to understand.
-Detail: 6 points.
There were some given but it was lacking at several parts, especially around the situation itself. It appears to be more of a plot driven story, but adding more details would allow the plot to further advance smoothly
-Plot: 6 points.
As was stated in comprehension, the story was a little rough at the start. Although the mental breakdown of the main character did bring a few chuckles out of me. Could use a little more refinement on the overarching story itself though instead of being on a "one-track" mind setting XD (useewatIdidthar?)
-Characters: 5 points.
Aside from the name of the main character and the description of the "target" character...I as the readers have absolutely no idea what to make of them. I can imagine different things, however being able to present your character in the manner you intended it would have been very very helpful, especially when it is a story about two characters we have absolutely no clue about. For all we know it could have been you and how you met your IRL girlfriend.
-Creativity: 5 points.
Although the main selling points are the humor and seemingly utter mental breakdown of the main character, it lacks the color to make the story stand out. It seems more shaded than colorful, maybe it comes from the limited number of characters we were given. Try adding a bit more flair to it and see where that takes you.
-English: 8 points.
Slight grammar here and there, but hardly even noticeable. Since the main character seemed to be having a mental breakdown, the use of all caps in a segment seemed fitting. The one thing I would like to comment on, is the spacing area for different lines of thought. I don't know if you were being considerate for the people who were going to draw this if you won or what, but...
-Originality: 8 points.
Meeting in a train! I haven't seen many of those. Especially with the main character just hating their job except for one particular person. It almost seems like this was a personal experience type story. How close am I to the mark? Fu fu fu~
-Ending: 7 points.
It was an abrupt cliffhanger type ending, however it is not a bad one. It is the type that leaves the option for a chapter 2. On its own, its fine, however some people might not take too well to it based on what I had stated earlier.
-Customized/Blank: I will make this one my own setting and put it as Feel: 6 points.
It feels more like a personal experience than an actual story. Like something you'd tell your friends who already know some of the details than to complete strangers who know absolutely nothing about what the situation surrounding the incident was.
-Connection: 8 points.
The flow went quite well. I have no issues with how the connection of the entire story went. How it went from part A to part B to Part C was well done, however as I stated earlier in different segments, it was like being dropped in the middle of an area and told "find the exit". It takes a while to start, but it gets a little easier once you get going.
Total Active Score: 66 points.
Thanks for the great reads everyone, it always amazes me how people have so many words to describe one scene. The next section contains individual points that I found glaring for the stories in the order that I read them. Of course, I not an experienced writer so my delivery may not be good. That said, feel free to take them with a pinch of salt.
I don't know if there are any exceptions, but it's usually <person> <action> instead of <action> <person>. '"In your dreams," said Fate.' should be '"In your dreams," Fate said.'
There's a lot of conversation but little action between the lines. Imagine you are speaking to your friends in real life and what action each person would do according to their character. Even a slight action like raising an eyebrow or smiling faintly gives a better image for the reader.
It's practically what Alicia said, sorry that I can't add anything.
I'll be honest, I don't support three-way pairings that much. Ignoring that, maybe more feelings would be evoked if your provided what Nanoha and Fate thought of Hayate as well.
I'll assume that all characters are original.
Adding actions or tone to the characters while they speak is a good way to improve the mental picture. For example, when Sarah finally clipped the drunkard's ticket, you could add at the end 'I said with exasperation.' You could also go into detail how the drunkard refused to let his ticket be clipped to provide a clearer image.
Don't put the arrows '<' or '>' in the story itself, use more words to describe what sound was made.
Having too many capital letters negates their effect. Maybe having only the last sentence of a flurry of thoughts as all capitals would be better.
I think Fate was out of character when she cried, "Safe!", posed and started to bow while thanking them. Perhaps she would have blushed or bowed once and thanked them softly.
The final sentence struck me as too many exclamation marks. I don't know if it was meant to be a joke since '1111one' suddenly came out.
Lastly, would I be revealing be too much if I provided how many scenes I had and the total amount of words?
To answer your last question, as long as you don't actually provide the contents of the story, that's fine.
@ darkhalo191: I try my best to put into words certain gestures or actions to the best of my ability and that sometimes my grammar may be a tad off to some...however, there's only so much that words can convey when regarding movement...at least when it comes to writing.
With that said...here's the story.
Dang, I'm posting so much today. :/ Anyways, here're your reviews, Kana. =3 Thanks for participating in the contest~ ... ... Lol. I sound like a broken record player now. ^^"
Nanoha: This made me smile the whole way.
Sammie: Good read. It was funny and fluffy.
Sha: Jokes on sex lives are good and all, but they can put off the feeling of the story, though I clearly give my
Stamp on it, because it felt dumb and cute! So go on and never give up!
Kail-Mello: I like how it was Nanoha and Fate playing Hayate’s role. Makes it somewhat original. The ending was funny and… Well, it was interesting. =3 I didn't get much of the sexual innuendos, but it was cute as far as I could tell. XD Good job. ^^
There were six scene breaks with a total of 2105 words. I need to work on length...
Since all the rejected (quoted from Kail-Mello) entries are here, I'll share the original piece that I wanted to submit. No need to review or grade :)
Hey, I've read it! it's alredy up in the fanfiction section, isn't it? I like it, but I'm a sucker for fluffy...
That said, reading all the reviews it almost seems to me I turned out to be the bad judge. Yay! >=D
Yes, it is.
That can't be right; you have years of experience writing fanfics, an amazing quote as your signature and a self-made doujin with lots of support. Maybe you were afraid to point out too many down points. Personally, I want people to pick apart my work so I can improve.
Even though we didn't get officially rejected I figured I'd toss in one of the stories Yuki and I wrote for the contest, but ultimately scrapped, here just for fun. This was actually inspired by one of my conversation's with Natus and Yuki absolutely loved it.
Yuki and I feel bad about missing the contest, but we were just both too busy. In the end we should have just submitted this or one of the other stories we wrote up... but we're both notorious for our A.D.D.
Oh well Please enjoy the Team GEMINI x The Polaris Project story: Trials of a Great Mind. It'd be really nice if we could get reviewed on it, too. :>
The GEMINI Project
Carim furrowed her brows together as a heavy sigh escaped the retired knight’s lips. She sat in her spacious living room with a green holo-screen in front of her. Frowning at the scene playing, Carim took a sip of her tea praying it would calm her down even a little. The soothing beverage did nothing more than warm her belly; in fact it had the opposite effect on her. The anger that seized her mind seemed to worsen by the second. She refused to let it show on her face, but she was furious.
A brunette with medium length hair walked on screen with a big grin on her face. She held a small tray topped with donuts in one hand and a large steaming cup of coffee in the other. Walking with a spring in her step the woman made it to her large desk and placed the items on it carefully. She quickly settled into her chair, wiggling her bottom to get comfortable. The action had not gone unnoticed, unfortunately for her she had no idea she was being watched.
The blonde watched in mild disgust as the woman on screen began to dig into the pile of donuts. The happy look on the brunette’s face was adorable, it melted the hardened knight’s heart but it did not erase the anger that clouded her mind. The video was shut off before the first bite could take place, Carim did not want to see the carnage that would transpire.
Pinching the bridge of her nose, the regal woman let out another heavy sigh. The years were finally catching up on her and small things like sneaking a snack was starting to irk her.
Having lost track of time in her thoughts, the knight failed to hear her lover enter their home. Looking up from her tea, Carim saw a figure disappear into the hallway leading to the kitchen. Not saying a word, the woman leaned her head back and clenched her jaw. She was still very angry, but that anger doubled the moment the culprit bee lined for the pantry.
“Carim, I’m home!” the voice called out again to double check that her presence was known.
“Welcome home, dear.” Carim barked out in a gruff voice. “How was work?”
“Someone sounds a little grumpy tonight.”
Footsteps neared the knight and the smell of chocolate milk and carrot cake filled the room. The couch groaned in protest as a body collided gently into it. Carim refused to move as her beloved’s head rested on her shoulder.
“It was tiring as usual, but Nanoha-chan brought me a few snacks so that made my day a little more bearable.”
“And what did I say about having certain snacks, Hayate?”
“Uh that I should have more of them?” the tiny general replied in a cheeky tone.
Carim couldn’t repress the smile on her face as she looked down at her wife’s hopeful face. She knew the brunette loved her sweets almost as much as she loved her job, but having too many was bad especially for her age.
“Nice try missy,” Carim growled. “Your doctor says you need to cut back a lot more. Nanoha knows this, I personally made sure that pastry-holic understood your condition. It’s bad enough she’s making both Vivio and Fate fat, I don’t want you tousled around as well.”
“She made them herself sweetie,” Hayate tried to reassure her wife, but she knew once the proud knight got going she wasn’t going to stop until they met even ground, and sometimes ‘even ground’ meant someone would have to wear a teddy bear costume. The military woman felt tonight would be her night to don the fluffy outfit. “She made sure not to make it too sweet.”
“Even so you were snacking.” The knight repositioned herself and the general so they could both lie on the couch. “You’re snacking even as we speak.”
“B-But… I just got home!” Hayate whined. “If I can’t eat my wife, I might as well eat cake.”
Carim blushed about fifty shades of red that very moment; her ears were ringing with the sudden rush of blood. “H-HAYATE!” she screamed in frustration. “I—You… what on earth led you to that conclusion!?"
“Yessum?” the brunette chirped with the fork in her mouth looking absolutely adorable. “You can’t use your period as an excuse anymore little Ms. Menopause.”
Doing the first thing that came into her mind, the knight pulled the other woman’s cheeks as far as they would go.
“Ita-ta-ta-ta stahp eet, stahp eet!” Hayate yelped in pain. She managed to keep a steady hold of her cake and fork while she squirmed in Carim’s relentless hold. Kicking her legs in protest the general tried to beg for her freedom, but the knight refused and wrapped her legs around the other's waist.
“Your doctor said you need to stop eating so many sweets! Why won’t you listen!?” Carim pulled on Hayate’s cheeks one more time before releasing her. “You’re getting fat! You’re fatter than Fate!”
“I am not fat!”
“Yes you are!”
“I ain’t fat I tell ya!”
“I see that second chin, sweetie.”
Hayate chomped down the final bite of her cake taunting the blonde with a victory sign. “Ha, take that!”
“Oh I cannot believe you just did that!” the blue eyed blonde seethed.
“Believe it,” the younger woman grinned.
Giving up on her assault, the knight relaxed and wrapped her arms around Hayate’s small frame. She kept her legs wrapped around her partner’s waist feeling no urgent need to move them.
“I wish you’d start taking my feelings into consideration,” Carim mumbled, her eyes averted from Hayate’s curious stare. “You know I only say these things because I care about you and your health. I don’t even mind that you’re twice the size you were since we got married, it’s happy fat.”
“Well it’s true. I love you and your spare tire.”
“I think I made a mistake in teaching you how to have a sense of humor.” Hayate let out a heavy sigh and continued, “Shamal’s a bit of a worrywart honey, she makes a big deal out of a lot of things.”
“She’s still your doctor,” Carim stated firmly setting aside the comedy act for now.
“Don’t worry so much about me,” Hayate tapped the blonde legs signalling she wanted to get up. “I’m a grown woman; I know where to set my limits.”
“That doesn’t stop me from worrying about you.”
“I understand that, but a few low sugar sweets made by a dear friend isn’t going to kill me.”
Carim freed Hayate from her grasps completely and watched her wife stand up and stretch. She couldn’t help but giggle at the woman’s adorable actions. There was no doubt in her mind that she had married the most adorable lady in the universe.
“You need to eat healthier for the three of us.”
Looking back at the woman she loved more than anyone else, Hayate felt a little guilty for going against the promise she made. She didn’t mean to break it, but it was a homemade treat how could she say no? It wasn’t everyday that Nanoha gave her freebies from her café, this was a rare occasion and she wasn’t about to look a gift horse in the mouth.
“I’m real sorry for snacking at work; I’ll do my best to stop it.”
“No, don’t apologize.” Carim sighed, “I don’t mind if you snack, but do you think you could switch it from a pastry to a veggie? Also try and lower your caffeine intake.”
“Yeah, that’s no problem at all…” The brunette scratched the back of her head and scrunched up her face. “But what do I do when the Takamachi kids gang up on me with sweets? You know I can’t deny them anything; it goes against my cool aunt code! They’ll have it revoked if I say no.”
“Just tell them the truth?” Carim stretched out on the couch and yawned. “You won’t be able to hide it forever and you’ll have to go on leave soon after that.”
“Why did I let you talk me into this again?”
“Excuse me? I wasn’t the one who got jealous of her best friend.” The blonde sneered, she then did her best to mimic her beloved’s voice, “Nanoha-chan has such adorable kids I want one! Ne, ne Carim we should have one!”
“Did I really say that?”
“The blame for your predicament falls squarely on your shoulders, love.”
“Oh shove a scone in it you tea drinking butt.”
“I was perfectly fine with the way things were. I never expected for our lives to take this sudden turn.”
“Really?” Hayate’s shoulders slumped down as Carim’s harsh words lingered in her thoughts. She knew Carim was initially against the idea of children because of their age and work schedule, but the joy of holding her friends’ children could not compare to holding one of their own.
Noticing her crestfallen wife, the knight immediately jumped to her side and hugged her tightly. “Don’t get me wrong angel, I didn’t mean that I didn’t want this to happen. All I meant was that I was okay just as long as I could wake up beside you every morning. I don’t need fancy things just as long as I was with you.”
“That didn’t make a lick of sense.”
“Eh? I thought it did…” Carim grumbled. “But the case still stands; the steps we took these last two years definitely put a lot of stress on you.”
“What do you mean on me?” The brunette pushed her wife away. “You lost your job because I wanted us to get married.”
“That was just a small bump on the road; it feels good to not have the Church breathing down my neck.”
“You lost so many things because I wanted what my friends had,” Hayate stood her ground against Carim, she knew arguing with Carim would lead to peaceful negotiations after everything was laid out in plain view. It was one of the many perks Hayate enjoyed about her relationship with a fellow politician, everything was managed diplomatically.
“And I have no quarrels about offering you that life, but we’re both a little older than they were when the idea of a family crossed their minds.” Carim tried to explain to her enraged lover as calmly as she could. “We’ve got more complications than they do.”
“You’re at work for sixteen or more hours a day,” Carim crossed her arms and waited for Hayate’s reply.
“Like you’re fairing any better,” the brunette retorted. “You may have gotten stripped of your knight status and your military rank, but the Church still runs your life from sun rise to sun set.”
“Running the Church flower shop isn’t that difficult you know.”
“You’re allergic to flowers.” Carim stiffened in response and laughed awkwardly. “See this is what I mean. We had our chance when we were younger, but we were both too absorbed in our duties to realize what we were doing to ourselves. So what if going through this pregnancy at thirty-nine has its health concerns, it isn’t like I’m the first woman to do so. Even Nanoha had complications during her first birth and she’s just fine.”
“That woman is a machine and you know it.”
“Everything is going to be fine; I’m as healthy as a horse!”
Carim visibly shuddered, “Wearing a horse mask around the house doesn’t make you ‘as healthy as a horse’.”
“Hehe, it’s amusing though.”
“Why can’t I say no to you?” the blonde shook her head ruefully and sighed, “I think I love you too much for my own good.”
“I love you, too, Carebear.”
“Don’t mistake my admission of love as forgiveness for your earlier misdemeanor.”
“Eh?” Hayate blinked. “Damnit I thought I cleared the stage…”
“Think again,” Carim walked over to the phone and dialed in the Takamachi residence.
“Who are you calling?”
Raising a perfectly shaped eyebrow, Carim placed her hand over the receiver and said “I’m going to have a word with Chubby Takamachi and calling in one of my favours.”
‘Hello?’ Fate’s sultry voice drifted into Carim’s ear.
“Ah good evening Fate, how are you doing this fine evening?”
‘I’m good you?’
“Just peachy,” Carim smirked.
Fate chuckled and said, ‘You sound irritated.’
“What makes you think that?”
‘You never call unless Hayate goofed and by the sound of your voice I’m guessing she goofed up really bad.’
“My dear friend you know me too well,” Carim couldn’t help but ease up as she spoke with the enforcer. “She did have a small slip up today, but I’m calling in regards to your dear wife.”
‘Oh dear, what did she do this time, she didn’t blow something up did she, because I’m still working the heat off from the last time.’
“No, no she did no such thing.”
‘Then what’s wrong?’
Clearing her throat, the blue eyed woman felt her anger rise up as she spoke, “It has come to my attention that Nanoha may have passed a few… unhealthy treats my wife’s way.”
The blonde on the other line didn’t respond for some time. Carim wondered what was going on when the sound of the two Takamachi women talking caught her attention.
‘Nanoha, angel, Carim’s on the phone saying you gave Hayate sweets again.’
‘Huh? I didn’t go outside today; I was helping Kokoro and Kiseki with their project.’
‘Really? Um, maybe you should speak to her then.’
‘Sure,’ The phone got passed over and the charming chirp of Takamachi Nanoha rang through, ‘Hello Carim-san, what can I do for you?’
“I heard the gist of it just now,” Carim sent a sharp, bone chilling glare Hayate’s way. “So you didn’t bring my darling badger anything?”
‘I didn’t bring her anything, Carim-san. Kiseki has me going through a health kick since she said my Fate-chan was getting a little chubby…’
“Leave it to Kiseki to be downright brutal.”
‘My little tsundere,’ Nanoha giggled. ‘Is there anything else you need?’
“No, I have all the answers I need. Thank you for your time.”
‘Okay, good night then. Don’t be too harsh on her okay?’
“No promises,” Carim cut in snidely. Turning around, the blonde ran a hand through her hair and remained silent. She lowered her gaze and smiled causing Hayate to flinch and back away slowly. “So not only were you snacking on the job, but you also lied to me.”
“I’ll get the bear suit…”
review!!! Lol, probably one of the best dares that could happen to me playing ToD. ^^
Easy to follow and understand.
We always know what the characters are doing and where they are. any more details would make the story too slow and destroy it
Nice, the only thing I'm wondering is why Hayate didn't try pointing out she's eating for two.
They were true to themselves.
Original in portraying a couple who's usually only in the background, and in choosing to show them as aged.
Very good, only a couple of things I could see.
What can I say, I like endings with a touch of humor, especially when they fit in so well and actually recall something said earlier in the story.
It didn't leave totally indifferent, but I certainly couldn't feel Hayate's embarassment/fear or Carim's anger myself.
Overall feeling of story quality, this cannot really be explained...
-average: 9,3 (same score as the winning piece, btw)
Allow me to explain the awesomeness of married life!
For your plot review it's really simple why we didn't focus on it more. The focus of the short was not on the fact Carim and Hayate were trying for a family, but on Hayate's lack of restrain on snacking. Another thing is we were trying for a realistic married life. Normally people won't focus everything on the baby, but rather the mother's health especially in the early stages. And considering the age Yuki and I set the two complications can arise very easily. To Carim and Hayate the idea of a baby is already yesterday's news, they're focusing on each other more than the... third wheel. The characters already know that they're having a family and the fact that we mentioned it was only added for a small pleasant surprise for the reader, sort of like a lingering thought to tie everything to get and make sense of Carim's sudden displeasure with her lovely wife. Yuki and I tried to convey this as best as we could and I think we pulled it off without a hitch.
Why Hayate wasn't scared of Carim's anger was explained in the story.
“You lost so many things because I wanted what my friends had,” Hayate stood her ground against Carim, she knew arguing with Carim would lead to peaceful negotiations after everything was laid out in plain view. It was one of the many perks Hayate enjoyed about her relationship with a fellow politician, everything was managed diplomatically.
Carim was more worried than angry, and Hayate knows this. Why be scared when you know there is no harm directed at you? And this is Hayate we're talking about, if embarrassment or fear got to her that easily she wouldn't be where she is in life.
When Hayate got caught lying it was supposed to imply that she was trying to use Nanoha as a scapegoat to lay a little heat off of her, but she didn't expect Carim to make a phone call to "Chubby Takamachi". This simply means Carim normally believes Hayate's little fibs and let's it pass, but seeing as how ticked off the knight was of course she'd go out of norm. Another reason why we down played Hayate's little lie was because in a good marriage something as small as that really won't affect anything but cause a little laugh. "Lawl can't believe you tried to get away with that crappy lie!" sort of thing, y'know?
That's pretty much all you had left wondering on the story. :> If you've got anymore questions and need explanation just ask.
Next one! ... ... ...
-Comprehension: 8 points.
Story was very easy to read and easy to follow. A few spellings here and there but thats something that can be taken care of by a beta.
-Detail: 7 points.
Descriptive enough to warrant warrant little imagining in regards to what the characters' expressions are when accepting certain situations. It helped out a lot to set the mood of the story.
-Plot: 6 points.
I sorta got confused at some point as to what the overarching story was. Was it about Subaru and Teana or was it about Nanoha and Fate? It got cleared up near the end but in the middle it had me wondering where the main spotlight was shining. I probably read it wrong though hahaha.
-Characters: 8 points.
I am not one to believe in characters in fanfiction being Out of Character. People change their feelings, mentalities-their "air" I guess so why cant the characters? It was well played how their characters deviated slightly from how the anime marked them originally. I also like how you kept their main strengths and poked some of their weaknesses as you progressed, part of writing things like this is character development. If you were going to stay in character, then this story would never exist to begin with, right?
-Creativity: 8 points.
The characters have their own "color" if you will and it mixes well with the scenes allowing a good picture painting on the story canvass. The added descriptions of the background items (like the frapp they had or the cake) were a good touch to it.
-English: 8 points.
Well...ish engrish. As stated above in comprehension a few spelling stuff mainly. Not too many grammar and no nanoha-esque words like "get me some water four this" or "weather or not we do this..." etc x.x
-Originality: 8 points.
Very good planning having one set of older "experienced" characters "guide" the younger more inexperienced ones in their search for their true feelings.
-Ending: 9 points.
Nicely done ending on a fun note.
-Customized: I will make this one my own setting and put it as Feel: 9 points.
This is more mixed with the ending, but it is a story that makes you smile/laugh at the end. Sure it was a little...disappointing that we didnt see any major..."action" happen between the two subject characters, but it was enough to allow for a sequel chapter if necessary. It allowed you to understand a little of what the characters are going through and I believe it made the whole point of the story quite well.
-Connection: 9 points.
Story flow was very good. Transitioning would be my only note here. There didnt seem to be a break between Fate leaving and Teana getting ready. Makes it seem like somehow Fate and Teana's convo was being done while the two were at the office and was still continuing till they ended up in her room. I am sure thats not what happened but yeah XD
Total Active Score: 80 points.
Once again... ... ...
Lets see how to word this...
Its kinda impossible to give this one a score lol. It shows the amount of effort you guys put into it. Through all the arguing back and forth, you guys were able to fully refine a good story into a very great piece of art. I have to admit I liked it the entire time.
The story only had one scene...but so much was done with so little written. I bet if this had been fully written out it would be twice if not three times longer. As I stated, I don't really care about characters being in character or not. I accept how the characters are supposed to be based on how they are written from the authors.
It was nice that you were able to eliminate the background entirely by aiming the "camera" directly at the characters. All we were told was it was at their home and despite having little data on what it actually looked like, the characters were able to emit the aura of the background themselves-nullifying that need.
All in all...well done~ ^.^
You jipped us on our review!! D8<
Thank you for the praise, and thank you for noticing the small things we were trying to do. A short is essentially just that: a short. Though there was some talk between Yuki and I to flesh this story out into a full blown story, but we decided to 86 it because we just don't have enough time between Alsatia and our latest project.
We tried to ignore the background as much as possible because... who wants to read a paragraph about how great a lamp looks in the corner of a room, but at the same time we tried to avoid just using nothing but dialogue to fill the pages... cause that's just amateurish.
We really tried to just focus everything on Hayate and Carim's marriage dynamics as best as we could. And, this is strictly both me and Yuki's opinion, but characters are fairly in tact. Carim retains her grace, but at the same time we expanded on her personality because well... she's a woman of power, but she's still a woman. She'll deal with everything diplomatically but at the same time still show her concern. Carim also seems to be the kind of woman who'd feel crossed if her lover went behind her back and did something she requested them not to. The part where she puts Hayate in a hold, was just to show that she's still very in love with Hayate and that their time together has made her comfortable enough to break down her regal walls and let a tiny bit of girlish playfulness through.
as for Hayate we kept her as down to earth as possible. Normally writers have her as some explicit pervert, but we all know Hayate isn't like that in canon. She's a sensible leader who's prone to worries and whatnot, but with Carim she's relaxed and playful. She also isn't too worried about Carim's anger because well... there wasn't anything to be angry at really. Hayate had a couple donuts and a small cup of coffee, there's nothing wrong with that. Seriously, a cup of coffee won't hurt the baby and donuts won't either, in fact it's normal to do so. Hayate did absolutely nothing wrong, and Carim's just oversensitive.
Hm, I think that's it! ^^ Though I think the reason why everyone gets thrown off with the story midway is because they're not used to married life.