Abandoned - Chapter 4 Up!!

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Abandoned - Chapter 4 Up!!

Postby SeaCrest » April 5th, 2011, 11:09:49 am

First off, there will be more chapters. Second, I really don't think the title fits. Third, this will take place with no contact with any known characters (as in Marina, Ali, Rynu, Tarel, Pheona, Keisin, April, etc.).

All current chapters are here.

Chapter 4

Comments? Crit? Questions? Typos (OMG the dreaded typos!)?

Title suggestions?


Chapter One
“Get out! You’re a useless disobedient little worm! Get out of my house! I put up with you because I loved your mother, but you are dead to me now!” A door flew open and a small girl was bodily thrown into the wet, muddy street. The door slammed shut as tears traced tracks down her face, mingling with the rain. She whispered a song to herself as she got slowly to her bare feet, her threadbare dress already soaked through. Long, honey colored hair fell in ringlets about her face, turning a dark brown in the heavy rain. Chocolate brown eyes ringed by heavy lashes filled with tears as she stared at the locked door.
Dark storm clouds covered the sky, emptying their bellies onto the city of Synara. Here and there, lightning flashed and thunder rolled. There was not soul to be seen but for this young girl, maybe six years old, standing in the muddy puddles of a back alley. Slowly turning away from the door, she turned her eyes to the clouds, then the dirt street. Thumb in her mouth, a habit broken long ago, she took a step. And another. Soon, she was running, splashing through brown puddles, tears pouring down her face. She reached the main square and collapsed by the flooding fountain. She didn’t notice the huddle of three dirty boys in the shadow of a shop awning, watching her.

“D’you think she’s an orphan?” James whispered to the other two. He was the older one, with long, dark hair and eyes.
Kyle shook his head. “D’ye see th’ tears on ‘er face? Looks like she got thrown out t’ me.” Kyle’s accent was more pronounced, just like his red hair and green eyes. He was the youngest of the three at ten years old. James was thirteen; Alex was twelve.
“I wonder why,” Alex murmured. He was the average looking one – average in height, average in the color of his brown hair and eyes, average in body shape and height. Kyle was almost as tall as James, and skinny, while James was short for his age and muscular. However, Alex was better educated than the other two. He was actually the illicit son of a high born lord, and was raised as the lord’s heir until his lady gave birth to a son. Then he was unceremoniously turned out.
“What should we do?” Kyle asked.
“I vote we just leave her there. Another mouth to feed is gonna take it’s toll on us, an’ she’s a girl, so she ain’t gonna streetfight and steal and whatnot with us. Better leave her to some high born lady to adopt,” James said with a sniff. He didn’t like girls that much; he was once jumped by a teenage gang of them for his food and money, over a week’s worth of earnings.
“James! She can’t be more than five years old! And look at her dress! She’s not some high born, or she wouldn’t be wearing rags like that,” Alex protested, gesturing to the girl’s dress. She was kneeling by the pool, staring into the water. As the boys watched, the surface of the pond became covered in thick, round green leaves, with fat, pale pink and yellow buds which burst into bloom within seconds. “Water lilies.”
“She’s a magi,” James said. He curled his lip, disgusted. “They think they’re better’n everybody else.”
Alex rolled his eyes before getting up. “Where’re you goin’, Alex?” James hissed, irritated. “You ain’t goin’ after her?”
Alex ignored him, striding through the rain to crouch by the girl’s side.

Hazel stared at the lilies she’d created with dry eyes. She didn’t have any tears left. She screamed shrilly in fright as a boy crouched down beside her, leaping to her feet. She dashed away, head down, running through the streets. The strange boy kept pace with her easily, letting her run herself out. Finally, she couldn’t run any farther, and dropped in a heap in a large puddle. “Don’t kill me!” she whimpered, covering her eyes.
“Why would I kill you?” Alex asked, taking her hand and hauling her to her feet. She was a tiny little thing, cute and small and delicately built, like a porcelain doll.
“Father said…he said people would kill me if they saw my magic. He doesn’t…didn’t let me out of the house before.”
“He’s a liar,” Alex said angrily. “Synara is a magi’s city.”
Hazel just sniffled. “Who are you?” she asked, uncovering her eyes. They were large and round, a warm brown flecked with tiny speckles of gold. “Are you a…magi too?”
“No, I’m not a magi. But you needn’t be afraid of me.” He picked her up in his arms, and despite her protests and violent wriggling, carried her back to the other two boys. “My name’s Alex.”
“Hazel,” she whispered softly, a curl of hair falling right between her eyes. She puffed out her cheeks and blew it away. Closing her eyes to the rain, she curled against him, exhausted.

James groaned. “You brought her back? Are you mad?” he demanded.
“She’s a magi, and her father told her people would kill her because of her magic. I think he threw her out.” Alex continued walking in the direction of an old shack on the outskirts of the city where the boys had made their hideout.
“Just because you feel sorry for her doesn’t mean we should help her,” James said stubbornly, crossing his arms and planting his feet where he was.
Alex turned around. “If you really felt that way, you wouldn’t have helped Kyle and I.”
“But we’re all boys. We can handle ourselves. She’s a girl, and if what you said is true, she ain’t got no clue what the world is like. Did he keep her locked in a tower or something?”
“Close enough. He didn’t let her out of their house.” Alex turned back around and continued walking, holding the sleeping girl tight as he stepped over puddles.
Kyle caught up with him. James wasn’t that far behind, although he was still grumbling darkly.

Back at their hideout, Alex lit a fire and placed the girl next to it on a moth-eaten but thick blanket they’d found in some high born’s garbage, wrapping half around her to keep the warmth in.
“What’s her name?” Kyle asked curiously as James grudgingly began filling a battered copper kettle with water to boil. They would add some of the mint that grew around the shack to make some semblance of tea.
“Hazel.” Alex sat by the fire, staring into the flames. “She thought I was going to kill her.”
“Didja see those flowers she grew? D’ye think she’s ‘ad any formal trainin’?”
“She’s got to be five or six, Kyle,” Alex said. “Magi’s don’t become apprentices till they’re twelve or so.”
“So if ye and James had magic, ye’d be apprentices by now?”
“That’s right.” The water was boiling, and Alex took three chipped cups and poured the hot water in them, crushing the mint leaves and sprinkling them in. The three boys each took a cup and drank, warmth spreading through their rain-chilled bodies.
“When she wakes up, I want you to find out her story,” James ordered.
“She’s staying either way. You didn’t see her face when she ran away – she’s terrified.” Alex didn’t look at James, staring into the fire instead.
“Then why’d she fall asleep, smart one?” taunted James. When he held a grudge, he held it well.
“She’s exhausted – I ran her out. I don’t think she’s used to any physical exercise.”
“Another reason why we shouldn’t keep her.”
“Look, James, stop it. At least give her a chance.”
“Two days, Alex. Two days.” James retreated into his corner and sulkily played with the string and yo-yo he’d taken from some boy that had tried to beat him up.
Alex sighed. Kyle, not wanting to get caught in the middle, retreated into his own corner, leaving Alex alone with Hazel by the fire. Sighing again, Alex threw the minty water onto the ground outside the door, stacking the cups in the patched up cupboard by the back wall. He hesitated, wondering what to do with the sleeping girl. She seemed warm enough, so he moved her to his corner of the shack, placing her on his blanket and jacket for when the weather got cold. It was really no better than the shirt he wore now, thin and worn and more patch than coat, but at least it was another layer. Then he doused the fire and curled up with his back to Hazel, his head on his arm, to sleep.
Last edited by SeaCrest on November 7th, 2011, 7:54:08 pm, edited 7 times in total.
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Re: Abandoned

Postby freakazoid » April 5th, 2011, 10:04:42 pm

I like it. :3
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Re: Abandoned

Postby SeaCrest » April 5th, 2011, 10:27:30 pm

*pokes thread*

Thank you, Yellow. I will be posting the next chapter as soon as I figure out how to make Hazel not a Mary Stu o3o
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Re: Abandoned

Postby SeaCrest » April 5th, 2011, 11:31:37 pm

Chapter Two
Hazel dreamed. She was warm again, and the smell of crushed mint filled the air around her. Gentle arms picked her up and placed her on something soft, stroking her hair before withdrawing. She saw her father, raging at her, and the safe, happy dream became a nightmare. Things threw themselves at her, and her father’s angry face loomed out at her wherever she turned. She screamed, thrashing, as water covered her head. A door slammed in her face, leaving her in the pitch dark in the water.

Alex woke up with a jerk. Behind him, Hazel thrashed in her sleep, crying. Sitting up, he took the little girl in his arms, shaking her a little to wake her up. “Wake up, Hazel. You’re having a bad dream. Sh…it’s okay. You’re safe.”
Her eyes shot open, pupils dilated as she started up at him, panting. She’d stopped screaming and wriggling. For a moment, she didn’t recognize him, but as he rocked her, she remembered. He’d chased her from the fountain, said he wouldn’t kill her, picked her up. She’d fallen asleep then, and didn’t remember anything else. “A…Alex?”
“That’s right. It’s okay. Do you feel better now?”
She nodded mutely, reaching a hand up to touch his face. He flinched slightly, but let her. “Are you real?”
“Of course. Did you think you imagined me?”
She shook her head. “Father has a girlfriend who makes me see things. She’s the one who made him throw me out.”
Alex hugged her close. “I’m real, just as real as you are. Just as real as the lilies you made in the fountain.”
Her face closed in on itself. “I’m in so much trouble.”
“No, you’re not. I told you, Synara is a magi’s city. There are lots of magis here. You’re not the only one.”
“What’s a magi?”
“A magi is somebody who uses magic,” Alex explained softly. The other two were snoring softly, and he didn’t want to wake them up. “Usually they have magic connected to one of the four elements – air, earth, water, or fire, but there are other types of magic out there, like ice and sorcerer’s magic.”
“I have earth magic?” It was a question, not a statement.
Alex nodded, shifting her in his arms. “How long have you been able to grow things?”
“Ever since I can remember,” Hazel answered, sitting up. She wriggled her way to the floor, kneeling there with one hand against the dirt. For a moment, nothing happened, but then a green shoot appeared, growing steadily. A bud formed on the top, and burst into a colorful, many-petaled flower. Hazel plucked it, showing it to Alex as the rest of the plant withered and withdrew.
He took the flower and tucked it behind her ear. “Can you grow anything?”
Hazel thought. “I used to work in the gardens. The gardener said to grow something, and I would do it. I don’t know. The cook said my tomatoes were better’n the ones she got at market. That was before she got fired for talking to me. Only the gardener was allowed to talk to me. He was an old man, and when he died, nobody could talk to me.”
So she can grow flowers and fruits and vegetables, thought Alex. There’s a point in her favor. We won’t starve if she can grow food. “I’m sorry. You know you can talk to us, right? The red-haired one in that corner is Kyle. He’s eight. How old are you, by the way?”
“Six,” Hazel answered, playing with the hem of her dress. “Who’s’at?” she asked, pointing at the dark figure of James.
“That’s James. He’s thirteen, and he doesn’t like girls or magi, so I’d stay clear of him.”
“How old’re you?” she asked, looking up at him.
“Twelve. Where’re you going?” Alex hissed, alarmed. She got up and walked gingerly towards the sleeping figure of James. Placing a hand carefully on the ground by his head, she grew some sort of plant with thick, fleshy, fuzzy leaves, which supported his head and smelled like lavender. She did the same for Kyle. “What did you do?” Alex asked.
“They can use it for a bed. I don’t know what it is.”
“You mean you just wanted to grow a plant like that, and you could do it?”
Hazel nodded innocently. “Could you make a plant that glows in the dark?”
The golden-haired girl frowned. “I can try.” She put her hand on the ground and concentrated. A delicate white flower bloomed under her care, glowing a bluish white. She squealed and clapped her hands happily. “I did it!”
Alex dug the young plant out of the ground and replanted it in the corner where she’d slept. “That’s amazing.”
“What the heck?!” James sat up, staring at the leaves he’d been using as a pillow. “What are these?”
“I made them for you. You didn’t have anything to sleep on,” Hazel said innocently. She reached out a hand to James, who flinched away. Yellow trumpet flowers suddenly bloomed from the ceiling, spreading a sweet smell throughout the shack. “You like honeysuckle?” she asked, surprised.
“How did you know?” James whispered, terrified of this little girl, half his age and height. “How could you know?”
Hazel bit her lip, tears welling in her eyes again. “Please don’t be afraid. I used to help the gardener’s grandchildren when they couldn’t sleep. I’d just let a plant grow, and it’d be their favorite. It would soothe them.”
“She can make anything grow, even things that don’t exist,” Alex said quietly to James, who was staring at the honeysuckle.
James turned to the little girl. “Thank you,” he said softly. He crouched down in front of her. “What’s your name?”
“Hazel,” Hazel answered. “Why are you scared of me?”
A shadow crossed James’s face. “Let’s just say I haven’t had the best experience with magis, okay? What time is it?” he asked Alex, who stuck his head outside. The rain had stopped, and the sky was a dull gray.
“I’d say about six or seven in the morning.”
“Wake up Kyle, then.” James crossed to the fire and lit another, boiling more water. “Are you hungry, Hazel?”
She nodded. Then her face lit up as she had an idea. Crossing to the unused corner, she crouched, plants climbing into existence under her hands. Vines wrapped themselves around tall, straight stems of a plant the boys did not know the name of, supporting tomatoes and other vine-fruit. Strawberries blushed red under their leafy veils.
James and Alex looked at each other while Hazel finished her little garden. She pulled up a plant, and showed the boys the tuber. It was a large golden potato, like the ones the high born ate. “It’s safe to eat,” she said softly. “If you’re gonna help me, I need to help you.”
“Aren’t you…tired, Hazel?” Alex asked with a curious frown.
She shook her head. “Not really. We had a huge garden that…” She shut her mouth abruptly. “Never mind.”
Alex shook Kyle awake. “Wake up, Kyle. We’ve got a good breakfast here.”
The redheaded boy yawned and sat up, staring at the mini garden next to him. “What..how?” he floundered. When he saw Hazel watching him fearfully, hands clasped in front of her, it dawned on him. “You grew that, didn’t you?”
Alex pointed behind him. “She grew that, too.”
“That’s…amazing.” Kyle said, getting up. He stared at Hazel, awed.
Hazel blushed. “It’s not that special.” She pulled the tomatoes from their vines, carrots and onions from the ground, and handed them to James silently. “You can make stew for breakfast.”
“We don’t have a pot,” James said, shaking his head. “We can roast them…” He trailed off as Hazel handed him a pot. “Where did you…?”
“I don’t know. You needed a pot, and then I grew one.”
“But pots…pots aren’t organic…” Alex floundered. Who was she, and how did she have such amazing powers?
“They come from the earth, though. Maybe she isn’t just a plant-grower,” Kyle suggested thoughtfully.
Hazel hid in Alex’s corner again, afraid she’d done something wrong. “Please don’t be scared,” Alex murmured, picking her up. She hid her face in his shoulder as he carried her back to the fire. He put her down by the pot. “Try making a ladle.”
“What’s a ladle?” she asked, confused.
“It’s sort of like a bowl connected to a long handle with a hook.” Alex found a stick and drew one in the dirt.
“Oh!” Hazel said happily. “I recognize it!” She closed her eyes and reached towards the ground. This time, they could see the iron pooling beneath her fingers, seemingly moving of it’s own accord to form a ladle. Finally, it stopped moving. Kyle picked it up.
“It’s warm,” he said, surprised.
“So our little plant-grower is definitely an earth magi,” James said, much happier than yesterday afternoon. “Maybe she can help us.”
Hazel nodded eagerly. Then she pointed at the stew. “It’s gonna boil over if you don’t stir it.”
Alex took the ladle and stuck it in the pot, stirring the stew. Kyle brought out the three cups, and then stopped. “We only have three of anything.”
Hazel’s eyes lit up again. “Can I try something, Alex? Please?”
He smiled warmly at her. “Go ahead. You don’t need to ask permission, Hazel. We’re all equals here.”
In a few minutes, she had a tin bowl, a wooden spoon, and a tin mug. She clapped her hands. “I can do it!”
“Alex, can I talk to you for a minute?” James asked. “You too, Kyle. Go ahead and eat, Hazel.”

The boys huddled against the wall of the shack. “Who’s child d’ye think she is?” Kyle asked. “She’s too powerful to be a run-of-the mill orphan, ain’t she?”
“You’re right,” agreed James. “Maybe she wasn’t thrown out. Maybe she’s a runaway.”
“You suggestin’ we turn her in?” Alex asked dangerously.
“Come on, you can’t be that attached to her already. She might bring us enough gold to live comfortably for once.”
“If she can grow us food and we can sell the food, we can still get gold. She trusts us, James. You can’t break that trust to a child.”
James crossed his arms and glared at Alex. “You really like the chit, don’t you?”
“I do. She’s so innocent, James. You can’t turn her over to somebody who doesn’t care about her!”
“Who wouldn’t want her? She’s a magi, and a powerful one at that!”
“Shh, she’ll hear us,” Kyle cautioned.
“Not who wants her, James. Who cares about her. Can you honestly say she’s been loved before? She doesn’t act like it, yet she’s helping us. We haven’t done anything for her yet!” Alex said fiercely. “You said you’d give her two days, James. You gave your word.” He turned and went back inside, spooning out three more bowls before moving the pot off the fire. Hazel was playing with a butterfly, with iridescent wings that reminded him of the stained glass windows of the high born. “Where’d you find that?” he asked her.
She looked up, startled. “She came to me. She like’s honeysuckle too. I think James should meet her.”
“She can talk?”
“No, but she was hovering over them and sittin’ on them when I saw her.”
The other two boys came in. James was glowering, and Kyle was deflated. It looked like James had won whatever argument they’d had. “James, James! Lookit! She likes honeysuckle too!” Hazel held the butterfly out to James.
He backed away, putting up his hands. “It might be poisonous.”
“She’s not,” Hazel said, pouting. “She hasn’t bit me once.”
“You’re a magi. I’m not.”
Hazel frowned, then dropped a mess of honeysuckle vines on his head. “Stubborn meany.”
Alex grinned silently, finishing his stew. “Thank you, Hazel,” he said, patting her head as he went to wash out the bowls. Stacking them in the cupboard, he told her to come with him. “There’s a place outside where you might grow a bigger garden, if you want.”
She looked back at James, who was throwing off the vines, flustered. The butterfly hovered near him, landing on his arm. He froze, and in that moment, the boy and the butterfly became fast friends.
Hazel spent the better part of an hour making her garden. Tall, thorny brambles ringed the garden and the shack, parting only for her and the boys. Within the wall, slim branches grew in strange positions, forming a fence around the plot of land. More of the tall sticklike stems grew from the ground, forming lattices. Burrowing vines made neat rows before withdrawing, and fruits and vegetables blossomed quickly. Despite the gray sky, hummingbirds and butterflies came to the garden, flitting from flower to flower. Alex watched on, amazed, as a bountiful garden emerged in front of his eyes. “You’re really powerful, Hazel. Aren’t you tired yet?”
Hazel brushed a strand of honey colored hair out of her eyes. “Sort of.”
Weak sunlight poured through the clouds, and she smiled in the sudden warmth. The sun caught her hair, turning it gold, reminding him of James’s prediction that there would be a reward for turning her in.

James appeared, staring at the garden. “Wow,” he mumbled. “Alex, it’s time to go. The stablemaster said if we did a good job on the stables, he’d give us ten gold pieces.”
Alex looked up and nodded. “Let’s go, Hazel. We’ve got to go clean out some stables.” The little girl left her garden, trotting eagerly to the bramble wall. She held up her hands, and they parted, letting the four through.
“What can she do, though?” James hissed, gesturing to the wide-eyed little girl waiting for them on the other side of the brambles.
Kyle shrugged. “Mebbe she c’n feed the ‘orses or summit.”
“She’ll find a way to be useful,” Alex said. “She loves being useful.” The three boys stepped through, and the brambles closed up behind them.
“They can’t be chopped down,” Hazel said triumphantly as they trekked back towards the center of Synara. “I was ‘sperimentin’, and I put iron in the wood while it grew.”
“Can they be moved by other magi?” James wanted to know. Alex hid a smile. For all his tough outer show, James was warming to the little girl, like a drop of sunshine.
She shook her head. “I don’t think so, but I can’t ‘speriment with it ‘cause I don’t know any other magi.”
Hazel was lagging behind – the boys were all much taller than her, and she trotted to keep up. Abruptly, Kyle picked her up and put her on Alex’s back. “You’re too small,” he teased her.
Alex adjusted to the new weight, looking over his shoulder at her. “Are you okay, Hazel?”
“I feel tall,” she said, awed. Alex chuckled, and they made their way to the stables.

Sorry these chapters are so long O.o I didn't realize. This one was actually six pages long, but I managed to cut it in half :t-sweat: I need one piece of criticism before I post the next chapter. I know Hazel seems like a Mary Sue, but her weaknesses aren't showing up yet, that's all. I'll give you a hint. Her father used to own a pack of direwolves, for one, and her stepmother often makes her see things.
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Re: Abandoned

Postby Phoenixwildfire » April 6th, 2011, 6:43:32 am

Okay, I love the accent you gave the kids. :yarly: reminds me of Urchins in early 20th century London or something XD

I do love Hazel <3 what a sweet little flower-grower lol

My only crit is that you should probably try to differentiate between the boys more- though that kind of thing usually comes with time in a story anyway :lol:

either way, please continue ^_^


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Re: Abandoned

Postby Aneira » April 6th, 2011, 8:13:09 am

I love it so far, and just had to bookmark it. I can't wait for the next chapter!
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Re: Abandoned

Postby SeaCrest » April 6th, 2011, 10:57:06 am

Phoenixwildfire wrote:Okay, I love the accent you gave the kids. :yarly: reminds me of Urchins in early 20th century London or something XD

I do love Hazel <3 what a sweet little flower-grower lol

My only crit is that you should probably try to differentiate between the boys more- though that kind of thing usually comes with time in a story anyway :lol:

either way, please continue ^_^

M-hm. I like writing with accents, they're so much fun.

LOL, she is sweet, isn't she?

Yush, they will be different later.

CoriaKeeper wrote:I love it so far, and just had to bookmark it. I can't wait for the next chapter!

Aww, thank you! *feels honored*
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Re: Abandoned

Postby deweesek » April 6th, 2011, 5:00:36 pm

You're good!! I wish I could write as well as you....my chapters are too short.
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Re: Abandoned

Postby Kestrad » April 6th, 2011, 10:10:46 pm

I like your characterization of the boys! Now, sorry to break the chain of purely positive comments, but Hazel is starting to seem a bit like a Mary-Sue to me. She can grow an endless supply of any plant she want, as well as pretty much anything she wants? Without getting tired? And she's only 6? Plus she had an angsty past where her stepmother figure refused to let anyone talk to her, if I read correctly.

That said, just because she has all those traits doesn't mean she'll turn out to be one, especially if you give her some balancing weaknesses or you work in some good reason/story behind her limitless power. And the way you wrote her does make her seem quite adorable and innocent. Your attention to detail is also pretty good--I'd like to see where this story goes next!

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Re: Abandoned

Postby SeaCrest » April 6th, 2011, 10:17:31 pm

Yay! Unpositive crit! XD I know it sounds weird, but I need ways to improve, too.

Yes, I understand that she seems like a Mary Sue - that's why I was like 'I don't want to post this chapter yet...but I can't change it...' Thanks so much, Kestrad!
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