Steph Ellis' Due to Unforeseen Circumstances the End of the World is Postponed
Rin: This story made me laugh out loud. The comical banter between this incompetent bad-guy family gives the piece a light, fun atmosphere and a refreshing twist to the concept of the End of the World. The characters and their relationships with one another felt well developed for the length of the piece, each a distinct personality. My favorite bit was "Perhaps that's for the best dear," said Ma, patting His arm fondly. "Now, why don't you sit down with us, have a bit of cake. You're looking a little peaky. You've been overdoing it again, haven't you?" because it amuses me with mental pictures of an evil, doting mother and her spoiled, evil-warlord son. Very well done!
Si: Loved the dialogue in this story! That poor corpse. Just on the edge of stardom--! I was amused by the idea of The End being postponed due to inefficiency and mistakes on the Evil side. The last half of the story especially had some excellent lines of dialogue: "This spell creates a corpse! I wanted you to create me a corps!" We get a good sense of the characters despite the fact that it's a short piece. Enjoyed the transition of red-eyed terrifying Menace to resigned and tired Boss. Last line was excellent. A fun and entertaining story!
Josh Bertetta's The House in the Woods
Rin: Oooh, I love the creepy atmosphere to this piece! My favorite line was 'The deeper they ran, the further back they travelled in time, the more the body count piled up, dressed in generations' because it gives an 'ancient evil' flavor to the piece that I enjoy. It raises the hair on the back of my neck just imagining it! The pace was well done with the time rushing past them, building up the tension excellently as they try to find their missing daughter, ending perfectly with those last two lines. Nothing more sinister than giggling and invitations to play from unknown things in a haunted house!
Si: You fit a lot into very few words! I loved that you had both dialogue and more descriptive passages that kept the plot moving. The innocence of Princess contrasted with the horror of the corpses is very well done and makes the ending especially creepy. Can't say it enough, EXCELLENT ending--you stopped just at the right point and the phrasing is PERFECT. Loved this line especially: "They screamed her name; it fled through the house in a panic." Well done on mounting the tension line by line. When the story starts, the reader isn't sure what kind of a story it's going to be--but the building suspense soon informs us. Excellent creepy story!
with The Shelley Boys are Back
Rin: I liked the modern-day Frankenstein feel of this story and I'm impressed with how well the characters were shown almost exclusively through their dialogue. The brevity of the story's pacing and the distinct impression that this has been an ongoing problem made the tension between the brothers palpable. Mad-scientist Philip was my favorite character with his distraction tactics and flippant attitude toward the whole situation. Going into the story, I expected Martin to break down and help Philip, so Igor killing him was rather unexpected. Kuddos on an excellent flash fic!
Si: Ah! The ending! The story! The characters, though we don't "see" them through description, feel completely real just through dialogue--well done! We get a sense of both the brothers just through the most brief of actions, and their short responses to each other. I love that there's two clear voices here. I also liked the way that we get a sense that this isn't the first time Martin has come home to such a scene ... or has he participated himself? Curious. The touch of naming the assistant Igor also says a lot in very few words ... and the understated yet still surprising death leaves a lot to the imagination and is very effective. Again, tone is maintained throughout the piece with no breaks and we can feel the tension between the two brothers as they stand over a corpse that one of them didn't expect to see. Wonderful story!
The winning story!
The Shelley Boys are Back
"Well, I think this just got awkward."
"There's a corpse on the floor… so… yeah, I think ‘this just got awkward’ is an understatement.”
“I can explain…”
Martin shook his head. He’d had enough of his brother’s blase approach to life. “I have an M-16 that says ‘I’m not buying anything you’re sellin’ brah.”
“You weren’t supposed to be home, yet…”
“Again, not explaining here… just drawing things out.”
“Well. He was supposed to be… gone… before you got back.”
“Gone?” Martin sighed. “You still using Martinez’s cleaning service?”
“Nah, gone as in Igor would have gotten him down to the lab before you got home.”
Martin felt a cold chill in his brother’s smile as he heard a rustle behind him.
Philip shrugged. “Now Igor’s in place…”
He sighed as Igor finished making work of his brother.“Looks like there’ll be two corpses to reanimate now.”
“Awkward,” Igor agreed.
“When’s dad due back?”
Until next time! *Rin and Si vanish in a swirl of cloaks*