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by novelista04 

Posted: 15 March 2016
Word Count: 772
Summary: YA fiction fight scene novel. There is no foul language or gruesome scenes but there is some mild violence. THIS IS NOT THE FULL STORY, IF YOU WOULD LIKE THE FULL STORY EITHER MESSAGE ME OR EMAIL ME.

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“Maddie, where have you-” Jason turns to see me limping slightly with his father grasping my arm tightly. My throat tightens at the sight of him. I haven’t seen him in so long and an ache in my heart seems to lift looking at him. Mark puts the other arm around my neck to stop Jason moving any closer and a small whimper escapes my lips. Jason’s eyes soften when he sees my face, bloody and bruised and then they freeze, as cold and unwelcoming as ice. “Let her go Mark!” He growls reaching his arm out towards me, urging me to him. I flinch as Mark tightens his grip around my neck.

“You aren’t going anywhere, Parker.”  He whispers in my ear. Turning to Jason he adds, “You don’t scare me.”

“Nor you, me. You stopped being my dad the moment you left when I was 10. Now let…her…go.” He repeats slowly. Tears stream down my face, leaving footprints in the sweat that has gathered. I raise my eyes to meet his and see love, great love that makes you do crazy things like standing in front of a bullet for that person. The kind of love that I thought only existed in movies. The kind of love I found the moment I met him.

“I thought I taught you not to love, son. I see in your eyes how you feel about this girl and it makes you stupid, Jason.  Love makes you week and Sutton’s are not weak. We are strong and victorious and powerful and we steel ourselves from the stupidity love makes you.”

“I’m not a Sutton, and I'm definitely not weak.” He retorts launching himself at us pulling me behind him, I fall to the floor as blood runs down my leg. I hiss in pain and clutch my leg. I drag myself towards the wall, leaning against it watching the inevitable events unfold in front of me. Jason falls to the floor in front of me and grunts in pain. He raises his fingers and touches his bleeding lip just as Mark swings his fist down again. I flinch at the crunching impact and breathe deeply pushing myself away from the wall and towards him. Gasping in pain, I shout for them to stop. “Maddie,” Jason breathes, “Maddie please. I know what you’re doing and please don’t.” He begs. I shake my head unable to speak. This is what I have to do. This is what has to happen.

“So what is it she’s doing Jason?” Mark inquires, “Seeing as you know what it is, tell me. What is Maddie doing?” Jason swallows uneasily, lifting himself off the floor and resting against a pillar. “Do as I say son, just tell me what Maddie is going to do.”

“I’ll tell you.” I say crawling over to where Jason leans, dragging my bleeding leg behind me. “Leave Jason out of it, this is my fight not his.”

“Well, aren’t you brave? First of all stand up and face me, and second, go on then tell me what it is that you’re planning to do.” Jason grasps my arm and gently pulls me up. I lean against him, swaying slightly as the blood continues to pour out of my leg. “I’m waiting.” Mark says impatiently, Jason moves as if to attack him again but I pull his hand into mine and stop him.

“I was going to stop the fighting between you and Jason.” I say solemnly. “And I was going to do this by surrendering myself to you.” At this Mark’s face lights up as he starts to laugh.

“Well that certainly would’ve worked.” He says, “As for the surrendering part, that wouldn’t have been necessary as you are already mine. I’ve claimed you and Jason throwing a few punches at me hasn’t changed that fact and as you can see there’s not a scratch on me, whereas with Jason he’s very bruised. Matches your face, I suppose. Now let’s get on with this surrendering. Come forward Miss Parker.”
“Maddie no!” Jason intervenes. “Listen to me; you don’t have to do this.”

“Jason I don’t want him to kill you in some stupid fight and this is the only way to stop it. This way there’s nothing to fight about, he’s already won. Now go home, go back to Alice and Matt and Rebecca and all of your friends. You’ll be safe and okay and it will be good.” Jason’s face goes blank and I see a few tears well up in his eyes. My stomach jolts and I raise my hand to his cheek. 

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Comments by other Members

andinadia at 23:17 on 15 March 2016  Report this post
Carys, I think this is really good. A very intriguing situation, if a bit meolodramatic. Good mix of dialogue and description.

You seem to be suggesting it's a middle chapter from a novel you've already drafted. If you can face it, you might want to upload chapter by chapter, starting from the beginning. But this would probably only work if you wanted to see people's comments and act on them, which could take the story in a different direction.

Since this is such a close up scene, I wanted an idea of where they were and what kind of distance there was between the characters, so that I could feel the menace more.

I suggest you reserve the dramatic language for dramatic moments. For example, 'Tears stream down my face, leaving footprints in the sweat that has gathered' overdoes the description of crying a bit. Nor does it really convince me that this is the way someone would be crying in this situation.

My only question about the overall plot, based on this scene, is why the father would want to kill the son. I can see the son wants revenge on his father, and I can see the father's motive re Maddie, but what's the father's motive against the son?

Detailed comments:

I think you could transpose the first two sentences, so that the turning precedes the seeing. So, instead of

“Maddie, where have you-” Jason turns to see me limping slightly with his father grasping my arm tightly.

you could have: 

Jason turns to see me limping slightly with his father grasping my arm tightly. “Maddie, where have you-”

'launching himself at us pulling me behind him' - I feel there's something missing in the narrative here, to show us the impact and how Maddie's leg came to be cut so badly.

'I shake my head unable to speak' - I suggest you cut 'unable to speak'. Saying she shakes her head tells us already that she's responding with a gesture rather than words. And in any case, she does manage to speak just after that.

Is the blood really 'pouring' out of her leg? It sounds like she's gashed an artery or something possibly fatal, rather than just a bad cut.

"And I was going to do this by surrendering myself to you" - this sounds a bit too descriptive/explicit. Maybe make it more implicit, such as 'You've won. You can have what you want.'

'Now let’s get on with this surrendering.' - that makes him sound almost comical, which I'm not sure is intended.

'“Jason I don’t want him to kill you in some stupid fight and this is the only way to stop it. This way there’s nothing to fight about, he’s already won." - I think this is unnecessary. You've already told us this. You could make it shorter or cut it.

Freebird at 17:30 on 16 March 2016  Report this post
I think this is a strong piece of writing, with a lot of emotion in it. From time to time it's a little overdone (sometimes less is more) eg the example Andy mentioned. But it's powerful and raw.

Make sure that you're not using dialogue to give information to the reader in an obvious way (e.g 'You stopped being my dad when you left when I was 10" - both of them would know how old he was when Dad left, and it feels as though you've put it in to tell the reader that, instead of being truthful to what the character would actually say.

I would love to read this from the beginning. I presume that you've posted this section first because you feel it's one of your best bits (and why not? It's good to see that you can write this way) but it will be of more use to you in your development as a writer if you post the chapters from the beginning. That way, you can get comments on all aspects such as dialogue characterisation, point of view etc, and your work will be all the stronger for it.

But i know that can be daunting, so there's no pressure to do so!

Also, given that you're under 18, if's probably better to post on here than email people privately (me with my safeguarding/Mum of teenage daughter hat on!!

joydaly at 06:44 on 22 March 2016  Report this post
Hi Carys,

Well done.

Maddie is a brave protagonist and obviously loved by Jason. It's a little hard to get the context and I think Sarah's suggestion about posting from chapter one is a good idea. What have you got to lose?

Got a tip a long time ago about writing and that was... Read it out loud. I think you could do that with this chapter and find a few things to tweak.

Keep going. You have lots of potential.

Joy smiley

a.m.edge at 13:43 on 23 March 2016  Report this post
Loads of action and dialogue here that I think teenage readers would love. One point that stood out in the dialogue was that they all sounded very well spoken ("aren't" instead of "ain't" for example) which is fine if that's the effect you're trying to achieve. Getting someone to read it aloud with you as a script might be a good idea. 
It's difficult to comment on characterisation or storyline as I'm not clear what it is.
Not sure what this 'surrendering' involves? I'd be really keen to read the story from the start. Why not post it? 

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