Wednesday, February 2, 2011

First Kiss #23

TITLE: The White Phoenix
GENRE: YA dark fantasy

Having violated a pact with the Underworld's guardians to ensure their quest's success, Cassandra must now pay the price: her life.

"No." Silas shook his head, his glare hardened by sheer defiance. "You're wrong."


Angry tears streaked his cheeks. He rubbed furiously at his eyes. "You can't do this to me, Cassandra! You can't!"

She grabbed either side of his face and kissed away his every tear. "I'm sorry," she whispered against his cheeks. "I'm so sorry." He clung to her arms as if separating from her would rip him apart. She believed it to be true for her.

He brought his large hands up to her neck and crushed her lips to his. His fingertips were pressed so hard against the base of her head, she had no doubt that they would bruise. This wasn't anger. No, she knew this to be something else.


She covered his hands with her own, her fingers digging into his skin. She wanted to remember. She wanted to remember the caress of his sweet breath against her lips, the tremble of his strong hands beneath hers, the feel of his nose nudging away her tears as they fell from her eyes.


  1. This was pretty good. I have just a few suggestions.

    In the first paragraph, "his glare hardened by sheer defiance" felt a little overwritten to me.

    In the fourth, I'd make the last two sentences their own paragraph, just because her dialogue stops and his action starts right there. Also, for some reason, "arms" in that second-to-last sentence felt a little clunky to me. When I think of clinging, I think of him clinging to her, not him clinging to her arms.

    Similarly, in the fifth paragraph, the adjective "large" kind of distracted me from the moment.

    Well, I think that's it - except to say that last paragraph was lovely:) Good luck with this!

  2. Very well written, but I think the bruising bothers me a little bit. Their emotional desperation is blatant and heart wrenching; does he have to hurt her physically, too?

  3. I liked it, but my first thought was Silas is all over the place. He glares defiantly while crying and rubbing his eyes. On the first read I thought he looked childish, not the best image for the love interest, but I know I'm missing a lot of details.

    My other thought was that she must feel just as desperate as Silas. Would she even be thinking that his embrace might be bruising her?

  4. Nice emotion. I personally like the desperation and didn't take the bruising as violent.

  5. I liked this. There's a lot of strong emotion here, but I agree with the other comments. The use of "large" was a bit jarring - strong, warm - there are a lot of good adjectives out there that would flow better. The bruising was also a bit I felt could be cut. The first part of the sentence tells us enough without that.

  6. Wow. This is great. I want to keep reading.

  7. Love this. Mentioning his hands were "large" pulled me out for a moment.

  8. What I liked about this was the hunger, The hands, grasping, touching, intertwining.

    I find hands very sensual and the way you wove them into the excerpt added to the prose.

  9. Nice job showing their emotion and desperation. I agree with the others' suggestions.

  10. Overall, I like the tone here. I might look over the adjectives to make sure they’re absolutely necessary.

    The last line tripped me up. If they’re still kissing, how is his nose nudging away tears?

  11. I thought it was a bit overdone. First Silas is defiant and a moment later he's crying. It feels as though his emotions aren't real.

    She 'grabbed' either side of his face. Is she really gabbing his face? Grabbed is a hard word and kissing away his tears is gentle. Perhaps a softer word there.

    The 'large hands' parg could be reworked. Large pulled me right out of the story. You might cut the bruising, only because it seems she'd be into this moment too and not thinking about bruising while they're kissing. And there's no need to tell us it was desperation because that is what you show us.

    And the things she wants to remember in the last parg didn't happen. Caress of sweet breath is gentle. There has been no gentleness here and you never showed him trembling or her crying.

    The desperation is evident, so nice job there. Perhaps clean up the witing a bit.