Wednesday, December 16, 2009

47 Drop the Needle

GENRE: Urban Fantasy

The moment the life slipped through her fingers, Tisiphone knew she had crossed the line. Her black eyes widened until they resembled two empty, forgotten wells. Her hands dropped to her sides and the body of the man with the cowboy hat folded to the floor.
This is not good, she thought.

Megaera spoke first. "Tisi," the Fury said, "what will we do?" Megaera wiggled next to her sister, Alecto, to get a closer look at the body.

Alecto addressed the matter by smacking Megaera upside the head.

Tisiphone's hands, still warm from wringing the pervert's neck, found her own throat and she stepped back, rubbing her skin raw. Her black robes rustled like dried leaves against the concrete floor as she moved toward the door.

"Quiet, Meg!" she said.

It should not have gone this far. In fact, it never had gone this far before. She had never lost sight of her purpose. Always steady. In control. But what that beast did to that girl…

She shook her head. He deserved to suffer. As the Avenger of Murder, it was her job to see to it. She was bound by oath to punish the wicked, because that is what Furies do. Every murderer shall pay a price, despite the mortal courts. Humans, Tisiphone thought, dispicable. Letting a murderer free due to some rule that twelve of them must agree on his guilt? For what was law without justice?

Except, now, she was a murderer too.


  1. I don't get a sense of danger from this more like an "Oh crap" moment.

    But I really liked what I read. I totally agree with the sentiment about letting the wicked off. When i read what he did, I applauded Tisiphone.

    This part "Megaera wiggled next to her sister, Alecto, to get a closer look at the body." didn't sound right to me. wiggling closer makes me picture her doing a snake like movement and I don't think that is what you meant here.

    Great writing- sounds like a good story.

  2. Oh, well, I loved this, good action, good descriptions from top to bottom.

    Tension more so than danger, but excellent pacing, I enjoyed this very much and would definitely read more.

    The smack upside the head was a nice touch, love the humor and visual in that exchange.

    I wish you the best of luck.

  3. Some cool stuff here; I'm not feeling danger, though, as the danger seems to have already passed (the cowboy is already dead).

    The main problems I see here are related to point of view. In the first paragraph, Tisiphone would not know that her eyes widened and resembled two empty, forgotten wells; that is a POV error (unless this isn't actually from her POV, but again, I feel POV was problematic here).

    I like the last sentence. It creates tension.


    "Every murdered shall pay..."

    SHALL is grammatically incorrect. It should be WILL. ("Shall" only belongs with "I" and "we".)

    "Humans, Tisiphone thought, dispicable."

    Punctuation and spelling errors.

    Humans, Tisiphone thought. Despicable.


    Humans. Despicable.

    Press on!

  4. Echos to what has been said. Don't get who's POV we are in and this pulls me out. Also, I didn't love the first sentence because it took me too long to get what you meant and I think you could be clearer. The guy does literally slip through her hands but she also snuffs the life from him, correct? Why not say that more clearly? Anyway, good work.

  5. This is great. I love opening with the death, because that raises lots of interesting story questions. And then you surprised me with the humor of the third paragraph. It made me feel like I want to read on to see what else you'll surprise me with.

    In this short entry you've developed a sympathetic character, one who has jeopardized her own safety by avenging the innocent, and put her in peril.

    And the last sentence was awesome. Good job!

  6. I like the opening line. It really caught my interest. So, I'm thinking Tisiphone is the POV we're in, right? Then she wouldn't be thinking "her black eyes widened" I see that as a POV shift. Unless she can see the color of her eyes. . .

    Love the "folded to the floor." NICE!!!!

    Love the "...still warm from wringing the pervert's neck, found her own throat..." Nice work there.

    The last line is a great ending as well.

    I enjoyed this. I felt a little of the danger, cuz by the last line, she was murder and there was a looming oath out there to punish the wicked. . so, she, too, is now in danger, right?

    Great work.

  7. I didn't like the first line, unless, as a Fury, she can literally see something that represents life slipping through her fingers. Also, life slipping through her fingers seems a bit cliche; even something as small as changing the verb to slid would make a difference.

    On the whole, I probably wouldn't read on. Tightening this up would go a long way, though, since I like the idea of importing Greek mythology to the present day.

    Good luck with this.

  8. I agree with previous posts about certain words and expressions - "wiggled next to her sister," "two empty wells," etc.
    This is an interesting idea - the furies are a great mythological icon, and your dealing with the same kind of paradox of justice that showed up in the Orestia and elsewhere. Is perfect justice even possible? Great themes. I don't know if the Pratchett-esque style will serve the themes very well, but it would certainly be interesting to read.
    I don't know if I believe that this has never happened before. Over thousands of years avenging murder, what did Mr. Cowboy-Hat do that was worse than all of the others? Why did Tisi lose control with this one?
    Also, I don't sense any imminent threat here (more of a general set up for the novel, really. Is this the first scene?) The ordinary avengers of murder are the furies themselves, and I don't get the sense that Tisi's sisters are going to try to avenge Tisi's indiscretion in any way. Where is the threat coming from? Are there other furies out there?
    I'd keep reading, but I don't feel a great deal of danger or tension just now.