Maya Takes Flight

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  1. #1
    Brock's Pikachu LightningTopaz's Avatar Moderator
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    Default Maya Takes Flight

    "Come on, Lita!" Maya urged the little yellow mouse struggling to keep up with her. The two of them had departed Viridian City an hour before, and were now winding through Viridian Forest en route to their next show in Pewter.

    "Pi pi..." Lita complained as she collapsed in the grass for a moment.

    "What's the matter?" Maya looked back to see her Pichu laying in the grass and breathing heavily. "Want me to carry you for a while?"

    "Pichu." Lita replied. Maya gently picked her up and set her on her shoulder. For a while, she was interested in the leaves fluttering in the breeze, the Caterpies munching on leaves, and what little sunlight there was peeking through the trees. Although it was morning, the trees were tall enough to obscure the sun and make it hard to see. But her master had passed through this forest many times with no trouble, so why would this time be any different?

    "When we get to Pewter, we'll relax all you want." Maya asured her Pichu as she tromped through the underbrush.

    "Pi Pichu pi pi?" Lita asked.

    "I'm pretty sure Brock is going to be there tomorrow, sweetie." Maya replied. "After all, he ASKED us to come to begin with."

    Lita's eyes turned to hearts as she thought of past visits to Pewter City. She knew her master dreamed of being a master storyteller like he was, so she came there as often as possible to learn new tales and tips for telling them directly from her idol himself. She sighed and slipped off into a daydream of one visit she had especially enjoyed: the time Brock had told her master the tale "The Clever Little Pidgey", complete with being in full minstrel costume, harp and all...

    <i>Maya listened as Brock, now clad in a green tunic with silver swirls, black sparkling pants, and black shoes, ran a finger over the strings of a small harp decorated in gems and ivy inlaywork and began a quiet melody. Lita recognized the song--the song "Teller of Tales--which was also the theme music for Brock's minstrel persona. When the last note dies, Brock begins his tale. "Once a flock of Pidgey were on their way to the meadows to lay their first eggs of spring. When they were about halfway there, one Pidgey--I'll call her Alya-- said to her sisters..." He switches to a breathy female voice. "My sisters, please go on without me--I must lay my first clutch right away, and I won't make it to the meadows in time!" As himself, he continues "The other Pidgeys begged and pleaded for Alya to reconsider, but Alya had made her mind up. They said many tearful goodbyes and promised to meet on the way back. Alya, meanwhile, walked into a forest nearby the meadows and made her nest under an oak tree. She laid her first egg not long after, and scuttled off to find a bug or two for her lunch. When she returned some time later, the egg was gone!"

    "Pi pi?" Lita asked.

    "She looked all over the edge of the meadows and all over the forest for her egg, but by the time she returned, it was evening, and the sun was beginning to set." Brock replies, playing a frantic melody to symbolize Alya looking. "The next day, she decided to climb into the oak tree, and laid her second egg in the safety of its branches. Once sure her egg was safe, she climbed down into the grass and went looking for bugs like she did before. But when she returned, the egg was gone--again!" Maya laughed as Brock adds an upward glissando for effect. "Alya figured that there was likely a Ninetales or a Sneasel eating her eggs--so she saw that there was a town not far from the forest, and went in search of someone who could help protect her eggs. She came to the house of the town smithy some hours later and asked him..." He switches to his "Alya" voice again. "Please sir, would you make me a little house made of iron?"

    He then switches to a deeper version of himself. "Of course, Miss Pidgey, in return for a hundred eggs."

    As himself, he continues "So the smithy left a basket outside, and set to work on the little iron house." He plucks out a rhythmic drone with the higher note being a little louder than the lower note, as if mimicing a hammer. "At every stroke of the smithy's hammer on the iron, Alya laid an egg; and no sooner had he struck the hundreth blow, the house was finished, and Alya's basket was filled with the hundred eggs she had promised as payment. Alya thanked the smithy for his kindness, took the house, and carried it to a clearing in the forest, where she laid the rest of her eggs in peace...."</i>

    "Hey..." Maya gently nudged Lita awake, snapping her back to reality. "Everything okay?"

    Lita was about to answer when the flutter of wings got her attention. She watched, mesmerized, as a flock of Pidgeys landed in the brush and began scratching for Caterpies and Wurmples in the dirt. "Pichu!" she cries and mustered the strength to dash to the flock of Pidgeys.

    "Hey, wait!" Maya ran to keep up with the running Pichu, startling most of the flock away in a flurry of wings and squawks. One Pidgey, a female, decided to challenge the Pichu.

    "Pi!" Lita gasped as the Pidgey sent a small Gust roaring in her direction, and quickly jumped out of the way of the small tornado.

    "Great dodge, now use Thundershock!" Maya commanded. Lita nodded and countered with a burst of sparks, but the electric bolt went bouncing off a few trees before fizzling out.

    "Pichu?" Lita looked around, confused to the Pidgey's location. She spotted it hovering by a tree some seconds later, taunting her with a series of warning chirps.

    "Try Thundershock again!" Maya called. Lita obediently charged another tiny thunderbolt, which hit the Pidgey just as it tried to take off and dodge again!

    Maya saw the Pidgey fall to the ground, dazed. "Okay! That's enough." she told Lita before heaving a Poke Ball at the Pidgey and watched it wiggle intently...

    One...

    Two...

    Three...

    "Pichu!" Lita cheered as the center of the Poke Ball went dim, signalling Maya had caught the Pidgey!

    "Well done!" Maya petted Lita for a moment, then ran to retrieve the Poke Ball from the grass. "Welcome aboard...Mina." she mused as she returned the Poke Ball to her belt.
    Last edited by LightningTopaz; 15th April 2010 at 02:35 PM.
    My URPG stats: Maya's status

    SuBuWriMo status: 28,103 words in all!

  2. #2
    Brock's Pikachu LightningTopaz's Avatar Moderator
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    Default Re: Maya Takes Flight

    Story has been edited, and is completed.
    My URPG stats: Maya's status

    SuBuWriMo status: 28,103 words in all!

  3. #3
    bad wolf Scourge of Nemo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Maya Takes Flight

    By completed, I assume you mean ready to be graded, too. :D I'll claim this and crank out a grade ASAP.
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  4. #4
    Brock's Pikachu LightningTopaz's Avatar Moderator
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    Default Re: Maya Takes Flight

    Okay--I had fun with the flashback setting up the catch.
    My URPG stats: Maya's status

    SuBuWriMo status: 28,103 words in all!

  5. #5
    bad wolf Scourge of Nemo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Maya Takes Flight

    Introduction: You told me a bit about the character, helped to flesh out a bit of her personality, and structured a situation. That fulfils the basic guidelines of an introduction, certainly—kudos there. However, keep in mind that you should also attempt to take full advantage of all your space. Within that “first-glimpse” setting, it could have been useful to be informed of more details—perhaps they were passing through Viridian Forest after winning a gym battle in town, and were eager for their next victory… or perhaps they were passing through after a loss, and both were out of sorts. Little details like that help give a story life. :D

    All that said, for your first run through based on what we look for in URPG, this was a pretty darn good first shot at an intro. SO GOOD FOR YOU. ^_^

    Plot: Normally, the whole trainer-woods-Pokémon thing is the greatest no-no a writer can make in URPG. You layered the plot with heavy character development and this idea of barding and a fairytale, though, which was charming and unique to the point that I am not the least bit fussed about the simplistic outer limits. That’s quite an accomplishment, to distract a grader from jumping all over your back about the trainer-woods-Pokémon structure. Take caution, though—if you try to pull that off on a higher level capture, you’ll probably get bitten by someone. Again, though, the plot is quite original, and endearing—I really enjoyed the story bits as they worked into the story.

    The story wasn’t quite as glued together as it could have been because the flashback wasn’t tied in with relevancy to the finale of the piece. It pertained to the thought process of the characters, yes, and explained some of the motives that had been moving the character interactions, but didn't fully tie in. Glue of some sort might be… that while the Pichu fights the Pidgey, memories of Brock’s music keep her going by running through her head and pumping up her blood... just as an example. Making 'em pertain makes them a more effective.

    Also, I have to mention—the battle-past flashback system is one of my favorite methods for writing Pokémon oneshots. :o

    Grammar: You were actually quite decent here—far better than the vast majority, actually. Your primary issue was dialogue tags.

    "Okay! That's enough." she told Lita
    There should be a comma after “enough.” This pertains to all situations where you used a period directly prior to a quotation mark and a “she said” type modification.

    There was a bit of confusion in the flashback section because you wrote Brock in present tense and all the other characters in past. This seemed deliberate, simply because it was so consistent—I am assuming it was an artistic nuance, in which case, interesting choice, and you pulled it off well, grammatically-speaking. It added a certain sort of ethereality to Brock’s actions by setting him apart in the reader’s mind. If you did this entirely on accident… well, it was a happy accident, I suppose, because it worked, and it looked good.

    A note: Most people will tell you that any plural form of a Pokémon name is the same as the singular. A flock of Wingulls is actually a flock of Wingull; a branch full of Caterpies is actually a branch full of Caterpie.

    Details: I’m not sure what to say about the mental image of Brock playing a harp. XD

    "Pichu." Lita replied. Maya gently picked her up and set her on her shoulder. For a while, she was interested in the leaves fluttering in the breeze, the Caterpies munching on leaves, and what little sunlight there was peeking through the trees. Although it was morning, the trees were tall enough to obscure the sun and make it hard to see. But her master had passed through this forest many times with no trouble, so why would this time be any different?
    You certainly have images here, and very good ones at that. This bit gives a very strong idea of a forest setting: animals, trees, all-around prettiness, combined with a bit that shows the character’s thoughts on all of this. Quite frankly, this is really strong imagery at this level. What I want to see, though, is more of that. You found little details that showed a picture of the forest as you see it; expanding that idea of “little details” into your descriptions of other things will really help you out in the future. Don’t just describe Pichu in broad terms of color and animal-base—find a really small detail or two, and leave the reader with your impression of the Pichu through that. I’d pick the pointy-ness of its ears and tail, personally, and ramble about how they look like snipped-off lightning bolts that haven’t had a chance to grow yet, just like Pichu is about the size of half a bread loaf. Or something. You, as the writer, should pick your own little bitsy details, though. :o

    Battle: The Pidgey went down a bit quicker than necessary, I’d say. I’m normally not one for drawing things out in battles, but a few more attacks could have done this some good. Even with a type disadvantage, three hits could have been a more reasonable exchange from both sides. Considering that this is, in all technicality, the climax of the piece, a good deal more expansion on the details of the attacks and the interactions between the battling Pokémon would have made for a stronger conclusion. Describing more than just the fact that the Thunderbolt was electric could have given the situation more impact. Use the technique I described early, perhaps: Pick something smaller (like the forking branches that crackle haphazardly out from the main beam) and use it to illustrate the whole of the object.

    Length: Good to go, although it’s on the lower end.

    Verdict: Pidgey captured. Good job, especially for a first URPG story. ^_^ The different angle of expectations can throw people off, sometimes, but you did pretty well.
    Last edited by Scourge of Nemo; 17th April 2010 at 06:33 PM.
    URPG Statistics
    Running Through Daisies

    kers x alaska x zak x derian x scourge x ireign

  6. #6
    Brock's Pikachu LightningTopaz's Avatar Moderator
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    Default Re: Maya Takes Flight

    Thanks, and I'll keep the battle and detail tips in mind--the flashback was my favorite part to write.
    My URPG stats: Maya's status

    SuBuWriMo status: 28,103 words in all!

  7. #7
    bad wolf Scourge of Nemo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Maya Takes Flight

    Speaking of which, my CPing apparently lost a sentence or two in the paragraph that talks about the flashback. I spliced it. XD The missing sentence end is in there, now.
    URPG Statistics
    Running Through Daisies

    kers x alaska x zak x derian x scourge x ireign

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