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[Voting] January/February 2019 Writing Contest
  • The Zelda Universe Writing Contest, January/February 2019:
    Voting!


    The submarine fun continues! Five brave seafarers entered this writing contest, and it is now time for Neptune to judge their works! (And by "Neptune," I mean, "ZUers." Bear with me here!) The prompt, in case you forgot, is "Hidden beneath the ocean." Hence this paragraph's maritime theme.

    Go forth, young fishes! Vote like you've never voted before! (Actually, please vote exactly as you've done before....)

    Here's what should influence your votes:
    • plot (if applicable)
    • writing style
    • structure
    • how well and/or creatively they follow the prompt, "Hidden beneath the ocean" (Remember when considering this that some writers may choose to follow the prompt in wildly different ways.)
    • how well the entries resonate with you and your interests (You shouldn't let this dictate your votes entirely, however. ;))
    To vote, simply make a post in this thread, containing the numbers (and titles, if you so wish) of up to two entries that you would wish to see win this contest. (Note that you cannot vote twice for the same entry.) Our entrants would also greatly appreciate any feedback that you can provide for their works as you vote for them, although it is not required. (If you don't have the time or energy, you can just put the numbers of the entries you're voting for.) You cannot vote for your own entry; if you do so, your vote will not be counted, and that would be such a waste!


    VOTING ENDS ON WEDNESDAY, 27 FEBRUARY @ 11:59 PM EST (That's also Pokémon Day; mark your calendars!)

    The winner(s) will be able to pick the next contest prompt, and their entry/-ies will be featured in the Creator's Retreat thread and the results thread. The runner-up(s) will also have their entry/-ies featured in the results thread.

    If you have any questions regarding the voting process or the Writing Contest(s) as a whole, please contact me directly, either via my wall or via Conversation/PM. I would ask that you please reserve all posts in this thread for votes only, so as to make my life easier when I tally up the votes at the end. And please include the entry numbers of your votes.

    ~~~~~~~~~~


    Entry #1: "The Ancient Blade" (Adult Timeline fanfic)
    Display Spoiler
    I found out that my grandmother, Impa, was a Shiekah. When she told me and my brother, and explained to him how vital he was in our survival, it didn't come as a surprise. I've seen her levitate things when she thought no one was looking, and everyone in the village could see that her speed was abnormal. Still, when she finished her story, I could only sit there in awe.

    She spoke of an old evil that was regaining its power. It was called Ganon. She said that my brother, Link, was to board a ship by sunrise and sail far away. Once he reached his destination, he was to go down into the sea. There, slept a weapon that could defeat Ganon. And he must fight the demon the second he drew the sword.

    I did not sleep that night. And neither did Link. I asked him, after a long while, if he was scared. He didn't reply. Eventually, I drifted off to sleep. But I don't think he did.

    Everyone from the village gathered near the docks to see him off. He was dressed in green, like the ancient hero who defeated Malladus so long ago. He was given a shield, the oldest in the kingdom, which belonged to the first hero of New Hyrule.

    "I know you will not fail us," said our grandmother, and embraced him. Link closed his eyes, hugged us both, and departed on the ship.

    I am old now. The same age my grandmother was when she told us that story. I never saw my brother again. I don't know what has become of him, but deep down in my heart, I know he succeeded. It's because of him that New Hyrule now knows peace.


    Entry #2: "The Telescope" (The Wind Waker fanfic)
    Display Spoiler
    “Wake up, Mommy! It's my birthday!” Aryll shakes her mother. “I'm five today!” Aryll's mother groans as she sits up. “Mommy! It's my birthday!”

    Aryll's mother, knowing it was futile to try to go back to bed, stretched and sat up. “Is your brother awake?” she asked.

    “No, he's still sleeping. So is Grandma. But Mommy! Can I have cake for breakfast?”

    Aryll's mother chuckled. “Why not. Why don't you go wake up your brother, see what he wants for breakfast.”

    “Yes Mommy.” Aryll said, and ran to the ladder that led up to the loft, where Link slept.

    “You were like that on your birthdays too, you know.” Aryll's mother turned around, to see her own mother awake. “Always so excited.”

    “Should I give it to her?” Aryll's mother asked.

    “It's up to you. If you feel she is ready to hear the story behind it.” Aryll's grandma looked up to the loft where Link and Aryll laughed. “You never know if you'll get another chance.” she said sadly, glancing at the shield on the wall.



    When night fell on Outset island, there was a party for Aryll's fifth birthday. Aryll's grandma made lots of soup for everyone, and many gifts were given to Aryll. However, the most important one was given when they returned home. Link was sitting by the fire, sipping soup, when Aryll came inside with her mother. “Aryll.” she said, “I have a very important thing to give you. However, before I give it to you, you must hear the story behind it.” Aryll was surprised at her mother's sudden seriousness, but nodded. “This is a story from a great many year sago...”



    A young girl named Lyra sat at her small table, in her small house, waiting for her father to get home. He always worked so hard everyday just to feed her, and tonight was the star festival. He always was able to save up just enough to gether a gift on the night of the star festival. This time, Lyra would give him something. The door opened, and Lyra's father, Fletcher, came in. “Father!” Lyra said, and hugged him.

    Fletcher hugged her too, but then looked at her sadly. “I'm so sorry Lyra. I wasn't able to get enough rupees to get you a gift this year.”

    “That's okay, because I got you something!” Lyra said, excitedly. “Look!” She held out her hands, and in them was a small red and yellow telescope. “We can watch the stars much better with this!”

    Fletcher picked it up, and looked at it, a tear in his eye. “Lyra. How did you get this?”

    “I got a job after school! I helped Ms. Marue clean the classroom, for a rupee a day!”
    “Lyra...” Fletcher gave her daughter another hug. “Thank you, I love it. Now let's go outside and watch the stars.”

    The two went outside, and sat on the ground, watching the shooting stars fly by, as they always did on the star festival. However, with the aid of the telescope, the stars were much more beautiful. They glittered all different colors, when seen up close. Fletcher and Lyra took turns using the telescope until the end of the shooting stars. “Okay, Lyra. I think I'm going to go to bed now. You can sit out here for a bit longer, and watch the stars, just in case a few stragglers pass by.”

    “Wait! Father.” Lyra exclaimed. “Look at that one!” Lyra pointed at a star flying across the sky, though much slower than any of the others. It also wasn't glowing like the others. It was more of a dark red, even without thebtelescope. Lyra looked at it through the telescope, and gasped. It wasn't a star. “Father look!”

    Fletcher took the telescope, looked, and frowned. “Lyra, we need to get as far from the castle as possible. That isn't a star. That is evil.” Lyra looked puzzled. “You know, the one the Hero of Time sealed many years ago. It has returned, and it is seeking revenge. We must get out of Hyrule.”

    “But father, this is our home. This is where mother... Yes father. I will pack.” Lyra ran inside.

    “Oh Din, Nayru and Farore, please help us...” Fletcher breathed. Then he went inside to get packed too.



    The next day, Lyra and Fletcher weren't the only two trying to escape Hyrule. Many others had seen the red star flying towards Hyrule castle, and were desperate to get as far from the castle as possible. However, the king had other plans. He sent soldiers out as fast as he could to relay his message.

    Lyra and Fletcher were two days out when a group of soldiers met them. “King Daphnes has ordered all Hylians to get to the highest point they can find.” The soldiers told them.

    “I'm sorry sir, but I must get me and my daughter to safety. We can't just go up and wait on a mountain.” Fletcher argued.

    “I'm sorry, but the king has warned of an enormous flood that will wash through Hyrule. You must take shelter up high.” The soldier insisted.

    “How does the king know this. I don't see a cloud in the sky.” Fletcher said.

    “He knows because he... He is creating it. We can't beat back the great evil, so we must seal it away again. The Hero of Time has not returned, so we are doing the only thing we can to seal him.” the soldier said solemnly. “I've already said more than I should. If you wish to live, seek highground.”

    Fletcher stood, stunned at the sudden news. “But what will be high enough?”

    “There are some people gathering at a mountain in the South. That is the closest safe place. I would suggest getting there soon.” the soldier answered.



    Many days later, the mountain was in sight. However, the darkness was already spreading across the land. Monsters ravaged travelers on their way to mountains, and soon, soldiers were posted on the mountains to protect the people. Dark clouds moved to fill every inch of the sky.

    “There's the mountain!” Lyra exclaimed to her father. Fletcher pulled out the telescope, and zoomed in on the mountain.

    “Yes, Lyra. This is it. There appears not to be many people though. Let's hope the monsters haven't gotten to them...” He stopped talking and listened. He heard horns. War horns. He turned around and pulled the telescope to his eye, andblooked down to where they had come from. Moblins, hundreds of them,were moving across the land. “Lyra. Run. Monsters are chasing us. We need to get there quicker.”

    “Father, the rain...” water started to fall, as the rain started.

    “Lyra, run!” Fletcher exclaimed, and grabbed her hand. Both of them dashed towards the mountain, hoping they could get there on time. Lightning started to flash, and when thunder wasn't booming, the warhorns of the moblins were. Every night, Fletcher and Lyra had trouble finding somewhere to sleep. After a few days, the moblins were too close to worry about sleeping, and the land was finally flooding. There would be time for sleep on the mountain. Every night and day, the two ran for a while, only stopping when Lyra couldn't hold out. Both were very hungry.

    Lyra stopped running all of a sudden.“What are you doing Lyra! We have to run!” Fletcher yelled abovebthe sound of the rain.

    Lyra began to cry. “I don't think we'll make it father. Look how far the water has risen It's up to my ankles, and the monsters are almost here. We still have days before we make it to safety...”

    “Lyra, remember what your mother used to say?” Fletcher came over, and hugged Lyra. “Never stopvtrying, no matter how hopeless it seems. We can't stop now. Not if webhave a chance.”

    Lyra nodded. So they continued up. However, the next day, Fletcher slipped on a rock.

    “Father!” Lyra exclaimed as she rushed toward him. “Are you all right?”

    “My ankle! I think it's broken!” Fletcher yelled. “Go on without me Lyra. I can't be saved.”

    “No father. I will not leave you to die. I can't. Remember all those times on the road you carried me when I was tired. I will do the same.” Lyra said.

    “You can't Lyra. You can't.” Fletcher pleaded, “Please go to your own safety-”

    “Not without you! I won't leave you! Don't give up! Remember what you told me last night! We must keep going!” With that, Lyra pulled on her father's arm.

    Fletcher got up, and with Lyra's help, they continued, though not quick enough. Soon the water was up to Lyra's knees.

    “I hear people!” Lyra exclaimed. “We're almost to the-” Lyra was cut off by the loud roar of a warhorn.

    “The moblins!” Fletcher exclaimed. “They're here!” Then they saw them. The moblins marched towards them, holding their spears, and laughing. “Run Lyra. I slow you down, and I can slow them down. They won't get you if you run. Now Lyra! I can't live, and you know it! So run! Don't let me die in vain!”

    Lyra cried, her tears mixing with the rain. “No... No Father... Please...”

    “Go Lyra... Go... Live for your Mother... Live for me...” Fletcher began to cry. “Go, please...”

    “I don't want to leave you Father, I don't want to forget you!” Lyra cried.

    “Then don't. Take this telescope. You worked for it, you saved for it, you have it.” Fletcher held it out to her.

    “No... It's a gift to you... Please...” Lyra pleaded.

    “Lyra, take it, and remember me. Go now! The moblins are here!” Fletcher yelled, and picked a stick off the ground. “RUN!”

    Lyra turned and ran, stumbling on the wet rocks. She was almost to the top, but she turned around, and saw her father, limping up, holding a branch against the moblin's spears. He wouldn't make it. Lyra wailed as she ran up the mountain. She would never see her father again, but she would never forget him either. Fletcher would be hidden beneath the ocean forever. But she would remember him by the telescope she had given him. Anytime she looked through it, she would remember her father. She would pass it down her family, so that all would remember her father's sacrifice.



    “...and so Fletcher fought the moblins while Lyra ran up the mountain, and vowed to pass this telescope and the memory of her father through her family.” Aryll's mother finished. “It has become a tradition to give this telescope to the first daughter of the family on one of her birthdays. My mother, your grandma, gave it to me and told me the story when I was ten. However, there is something I must do soon, something dangerous, and I thought that it would be best if you heard the story now.”

    “Did... Did Fletcher survive?”Aryll asked.

    “No, he did not. But he will always live on in this telescope.” Aryll's mother opened a chest, and pulled out an old telescope, red and yellow, with seagulls on the side. “This, from now on, is yours, Aryll. Take care of it.”

    Aryll looked up at her mother, a tear in her eye. “Will you leave me?” she asked. “You can't leave!”

    “I will always live on in your heart, Aryll."


    Entry #3: "Return to the Depths" (original short story)
    Display Spoiler
    “Never touch the wooden box in grandpa’s study.”

    It was a warning Eryn remembered her family harshly enforced for as long as she could remember. Which was odd considering there was nothing special about the dirty old thing; it was gnarled and unseemly, made out of drift wood which washed up on the beach.

    If it were not for the ironclad rule, it would be the least interesting trinket in a room full of artifacts both beautiful and macabre from around the world. After all there was a stone disk nine inches in diameter with a circle cut into it’s center and an obvious spiral groove which grandpa said was more than 10,000 years old. Cooler yet, it consisted of tiny hieroglyphs, which he said when studied and translated, it revealed an amazing story of spaceships that crashed into the mountains, piloted by people who called themselves the Dropa. There was a rat king made of 10 rats whose tails were stuck together with blood and feces, and found before the Ronneby Bloodbath. Her personal favorite was a skull from Sweden which had a stake not only driven through the frontal lobe, but overtime melded with it.

    Yet the dirty little box resting behind a bulletproof cabinet case, locked and far out of reach of small curious hands caught her attention every time she entered the dusty room. Taylor always whispered grandpa was probably an old German officer who escaped the Nuremberg Trials, and the box were things he collected during the war. On numerous occasions he tried to break into the cabinet to prove his theory, but he got caught every time. The last time he was caught he got an ass beating so hard he had to go to the hospital emergency room.

    It was the last time she saw Taylor.

    Now under the quiet of night, moonlight streaming in through the dusty panes, Eryn clutched an old iron key as she slid down the hallway being careful to avoid the middle where the floorboards creaked and groaned. Even though everyone was at the hospital, waiting for grandpa to die, it didn’t mean she was alone in the house. If Taylor’s attempts taught her anything it was never think you were safe; after all nobody was supposed to be home the last time he tried to break into the study. Plus who knew when mom or dad would come home to check on her after her meltdown in the hospital room only to find her not there?

    Eryn was running against a clock she didn’t know when it would strike 0 or if it already did.

    Still she managed to arrive with little trouble, though out of the corner of her eyes something seemed to be darting in the shadows, never lingering long enough to catch a good glimpse. Slipping into the study, Eryn ran her tongue over her dry lips. During the day it was like exploring a museum. Now, however, it felt like she was in a tomb. Even though it was impossible, she swore the skeletal head swiveled on its stake, watching her with eyes long rotted away as she walked by.

    The cabinet seemed bigger too. The old iron lock sat just above her head, but within reach since she just hit her growth spurt. Still, she struggled with the last barrier, constantly looking behind her for anyone or anythingwhich would appear when she least expected it. When the key softly clicked into place, Eryn forewent all attempts to be quiet as she grabbed grandpa’s chair and thunked it in front of the cabinet to reach her prize.

    Every hair on her body was standing up when she finally took the driftwood box, disturbing years of dust. Common sense screamed at her to put it back, to leave it be, but curiosity and a desire to finish what Taylor started made her throw the lid open.

    Eryn wasn’t sure what she expected. If Taylor was to be believed, iron crosses, war medals and maybe a military dog tag. Even though she never told her cousin as much, she always believed it to be a treasure map - perhaps to El Dorado.

    Instead it was this mummified fish - well half a fish. Instead of a fish head, it looked like a monkey head. The body was covered with fish scales and matted fur, and she could barely make out a pair of small breasts on its chest.

    Eryn’s face fell. A guarded family mystery, and it was some ugly little fake mermaid. In a room of wonders, this was the thing grandpa protected most?

    She went to close the lid only for something to creek and snap, and small spider-like fingers kept the box from being closed.

    A child taken,” gasped a whispery voice as water began to flow out of the box. “A child returned. An equal exchange between land and sea, the debt paid on this day.

    Dropping the box, Eryn tried to scream, only for black water to dribble out of her mouth. The last thing she saw was a pair of glowing blue eyes as the sound of the ocean pounded against her ears.

    -o—o—-O—-o—o-

    Michael never saw a crime scene like this before. If it wasn’t for the family’s insistence foul play happened, the only thing which seemed out of place was an empty driftwood box in a pool of water. It wasn’t exactly much to go on, and even though the family seemed to think the victim had been taken to the beach which the old mansion overlooked, there was no signs of struggle.

    Clicking his pen, he approached a blonde woman leaning against the window, watching officers comb the beach of the ocean below. If he recalled correctly she was Isabella Manchester, the mother of the missing child, Eryn.

    “Ma’am, I’m Officer DeBois with the Troy Police Department,” he said. “I just have a couple questions where else your daughter may have gone. I know you said she would be at the ocean—“

    “In,” Isabella corrected, her voice cracking. Burying her face in her hands, her shoulders shook as she let out a wail. Michael reached out hesitantly to comfort, wishing the academy went over on how to console distraught families.

    “We’ll find her,” he tried only to be interrupted again.

    “Then send out your dive teams. Thanks to my father,” Isabella’s tear-stained face contorted at this, venom dripping at her words, “under the ocean is where my baby girl will be now.”


    Entry #4: "Taken" (original short story)
    Display Spoiler
    Many humans believe that we don't exist. My people are the characters only in fairy tales and legends, but we do exist far from their prying eyes. In places they can never get to, no matter how hard they try because of our magic. Our magic is our own, and to ourselves we keep it. It protects us in return for the safety of our strength. We are the merpeople of this world.

    We have have gills and tails like fish, but we have the hair, faces, and upper bodies of you humans. I'm not proud of our resemblance and similarities. We can talk all languages of the world, including that of the sea creatures. Our homes look like caves set into the rocks on the outside, but the insides look like what you would imagine the home of a merperson would look like with decorative anemones, giant shell beds, and seaweed carpeted floors.

    We swim the deepest trenches. Our homes are made in the deepest waters. No human has ever reached us alive, until one day. You had finally accomplished in making a machine that could reach us. Its lights, noises, and movements woke us from our sleep and drove us from our homes. We hovered there in the water in shock. 'How did they find us?' we all asked aloud to each other.

    I remember what happened because I was there, hidden behind the rocks. We tried to fight you off with our magic, but you just kept coming in flocks and droves. You humans used your machines to capture or kill us all. Except me. I was left because you never found me. I am alone now, hidden beneath the ocean. The last of the free merpeople.


    Entry #5: "Hidden Beneath the Ocean: A Dream?" (original short story)
    Display Spoiler
    Elisabeth’s bare back feels cold against the steel of the table. She’s afraid, & it shows in the sapphires of her eyes. It’s the fourth donation, & she thinks it’s a miracle she’s still alive. She thought it would happen at the third. She wonders what would happen to those she is helping. As the doctors tell her one more time, You’ll be alright, & the mask is placed on her face to put her under (for the last time, she wishes), she makes her final request: let this be the last organ they take from me; let me complete.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Elisabeth’s eyes shoot open & she gasps. Where am I? She asks herself. Waking up in the pod she found herself in, she sits up & takes in her surroundings. I’m in a pod? And what am I wearing? She’s clad in a royal blue silk gown as long as her legs, the loose fabric feeling delightfully cold against her pale skin. Finding a mirror in the room, she climbs out of her pod carefully & gazes at her reflection.

    Her dark brown hair flows down to her her thighs like silk. Resting on her head is a gold crown with a single sapphire as the centerpiece, shining brightly in the room’s light. Around her neck is a fine platinum chain with a single sapphire pendant, with a matching platinum ring on her left ring finger bearing a sapphire lined with diamonds. Her shoes, peeking out from beneath her royal blue skirts, are flat, closed-toe dancing slippers the same color as her dress, the ones women might have worn to a ball in the 19th century. She wears gold armor plates on her shoulders, & a fine, platinum rapier is strapped to her side.

    I resemble a queen, Elisabeth thinks. But I was in the hospital moments ago, ready for what should have been my last organ donation.

    It is then that she realizes the strangest sensation that surrounds her; she feels as though she is underwater.

    I am underwater? Why?

    She steps towards the doors of the room she woke up in, & slowly, with one hand, pushes them open.

    The first thing that greets her is the azure water everywhere. Am I...in the ocean? I was above water only moments ago! What am I doing in the ocean?

    She then notices the shining palace in the distance, its turrets shooting towards the surface of the ocean. Several paths branch out from the shrine (as she sees when she looks behind her at the room where she woke up), the central one with a sign pointing the way to the castle in the distance.

    I’m sure someone in the palace has answers, Elisabeth thinks. That should be my first destination after waking up in the ocean.

    She slowly starts walking down the path, but as she does, the spirit of a royal woman, a queen, watches her carefully from afar.

    If only you knew who you truly are, the woman says, although Elisabeth is too far away to hear. You are Elisabeth, Princess Royal, my eldest daughter & heir. You will find out more soon. By the time you reach the end of your journey, you will be Queen Elisabeth of the Ocean, the lost Princess Royal, the Queen Who Has Returned!


    NOTE: If you entered this contest, please don't reference that fact. Bias is a real thing lol.
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  • Entry 1
    OK so this one was pretty short and was pretty much just telling what was happening. Having it be set after Phantom Hourglass is pretty interesting, but I think there was a lot of untapped potential with this. There wasn't really much to really connect with. Like there was implications of important threads - such as Impa being a Sheikah - which never quite panned out in a way which explained why it was brought up. I think this would have been better if formatted slightly differently - like the narrator looking out over the ocean and sort of thinking and touch upon things which would make the narrator easier to connect with. Were they jealous of their brother? Did they want to go too? How did they feel that their brother never answered? How do they feel he never came home? Little details like that which allows readers to better connect to the reader would go a long way.

    Entry 2
    OK so this one too has a lot of telling instead of showing. The way it was told it sounds like it was Link and Aryll's grandparents - which as a nitpick, the fate of Hyrule and the name of the kingdom is so long passed by now it became merely a legend that nobody knew what happened to sort of detracts from it. It was also very dialogue heavy and while there could have been moments which could have been very heartwrenching, it was undone by things like "x said." It made it just really hard to connect to the characters and care about what was going on. Also describing actions during moments could have been a lot better to in fleshing out the scene. I understand what the writer was going for, but I do think it felt a bit forced regarding the connection to the telescope with Aryll and the sinking of Hyrule. I think if they just focused on the sinking of Hyrule, there was enough gut wrenching material there to flesh it out and make it an interesting scene.

    Entry 3
    Alright, this one is a bit interesting as it presents a mystery, though I think it could have done a better job in the delivery. For such a large build-up surrounding the box, I think the pay-off was somewhat sudden and lackluster and the words the fake mermaid was a bit awkward. It isn't bad, and does a good job in it's descriptions and setting of the scene, but could have spent a bit more time on the payoff.

    Entry 4
    This is pretty short and sweet. Not much to say - it's a description of merpeople and kind of reminds me of a sphinx's riddle in a way. I think this could be more fleshed out - possibly focus on the attack of the humans.

    Entry 5
    OK so this has some good descriptions, but the formatting and punctuation (using the & instead of just writing and is a bit eh) could be a lot better. Also I think the ending felt tacked on there, and there was many unanswered questions like "what is even going on." It seems to be the prologue to some greater story or adventure, but for something this short and contained, I think there is more questions than answers, which is something you don't want to do as an author for short stories. You want things to be wrapped up in a neat bow. Once again, not bad, I just think more time could have been spent with this one to flesh it out and give it more to work with.

    Vote: Entry 4

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  • Okay, so


    1) This feels more like a summary of a story than a story in its own right. We never learn anything about the narrator and their relation to Link other than they’re siblings. Link’s departure could’ve been a poignant moment, but here, it just kinda happens. The story just kinda never really captures the reader.

    2) So, first off, this story could really use some editing. Also, the story suffers from poor dialogue, causing several scenes to fall flat, including the pivotal scene where Lyra gets the telescope (“I don't want to forget you” she says, as if that was actually a realistic possibility). Also, how on earth does Fletcher know the dark red thing is Ganon?

    3) This one is easily the best of the bunch. The author manages to build tension and pique the reader’s curiosity, and does a great job setting the scene with the room full of curiosities. That said, the reveal was kinda confusing. Like, I get that a horrible fate has befallen Eryn, but still, what happened, and what was the deal with the Fiji mermaid?

    4) So, there’s a shitton of things this story ought to explain, but doesn’t. Who is the narrator talking to? The ‘you’ is evidently a human, so like, what, did a human somehow still find the narrator? And why is the narrator talking rather than, y’know, fleeing or fighting? How did the humans find the merpeople in the first place? Why did the humans attack them? How did the narrator manage to be the only one to escape? The entry really ought to address these things in order to really be a story.

    5) Okay, so first off, the use of ampersands instead of the word ‘and’ is really distracting. So is the whole italicizing quotes instead of using quotation marks thing. Also, this entry really doesn’t explain anything. At all. Like, what actually happened? Because I have no idea. Then there’s the main character and her complete lack of shock at whatever it is that’s just transpired. And finally we’re told that Elisabeth is the Queen of the Ocean, but we’re never told what that actually means, so it’s kind of a meaningless revelation.


    Final vote: Entry 3.