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Thread: Of Wolves and Prey [Updated: 31/10; Part I.8 CHAPTER 1 DONE]

  1. #1

    Default Of Wolves and Prey [Updated: 31/10; Part I.8 CHAPTER 1 DONE]

    a narrative, authentic, alternative history AAR based on a M2TW-retrofit multiplayer game
    Chapter I: Where the narrator and the old wolf meet
    [I.1] Ye kings and dukes
    [I.2] The wrong way
    [I.3] Clericus ex machina
    [I.4] The arrival
    [I.5] Nightmarish beginnings
    The Beginning untold

    Divide et Impera
    [I.8] There were 3 of them

    For your information
    This is my AAR attempt. The posts will vary in length and often be short, in turn I try to post frequently.
    This is not your usual AAR:
    The story features a full story arc and follows several protagonists (the main ones representing ingame characters priest, knight, merchant and spy/assassin) in their fateful journey across the world as the ingame action unfolds. The game action setting the backdrop to the story isn't your normal M2TW-game either - ALL factions were played by different players. Apart from rebels, no AI was harmed during the making of this story. As for humanity - well, that's an entirely different story.
    As the story is narrative and the main protagonists don't appear out of the blue, therefore it takes several parts before we even reach the point where the actual game begins.

    Find more information about the game and the story in the two content boxes below:
    The Game
    Mod: Retrofit MP (basically vanilla)
    Factions played:ALL OF THEM!Except rebels and Aztecs.
    Faction I played: Milan
    Rounds played: 62. I left after that, though the game went on for a while.
    Battles: Autoresolved

    All factions were played independently. My estimation is that over the course of the hotseat, around ~30 players participated. Some of them were mediocre but others were definitely hardcore. It was forbidden to exterminate factions. All had to remain viable. This meant that you had to plan ahead. Even if you won a war, if you pissed everyone off you'd get rekt sooner rather than later.
    This is why I had two wars against France and not just one.
    The game wasn't just about war, you also had to settle your grievances politically.
    Boy oh boy, there’s much to tell about the wars fought and the intrigues spun. Some players I was up against were extremely good at both. I couldn’t make up some of the stuff that went on even if I wanted to.
    The story

    • This AAR isn't just a game report, but aims to be narrative, authentic and alternate history:

    Narrative: It follows several protagonists that are shaped on the characters you can find in the game (spies, assassins, merchants, priests, generals, and what not), from their traumatic childhood until the end with their own fateful story. Only one person is the narrator. You can try to find out who it is. What happened in the game is more or less the backdrop to the story, but of course, most of the time they’ll be right in the middle of it. The beginning and end of their story arc are set before and after the game action.
    Authentic alternate history: The story is based on a game, and therefore obviously can't be following the historic course of events. I do, however, try to reconcile both, and to show that our course of events is plausible. It will, for example, explain how the rulers have lost control of large swathes of Europe (rebel territory) at the start of the match, and how the situation at the beginning of the match came about.
    Ingame factions and characters will be reconciled with historic ones.
    Example: I was playing Milan, but Milan as a city state did not exist in the the 11th century. Instead, it was ruled by Albert Azzo II, the forefather of the mighty houses of the Guelphs and d’Este and ancestor to amongst others several kings of Britain and one tsar of Russia. He and his family will be heavily featured in this AAR. The ingame faction leader Georgio Rossi, is replaced by him. In this AAR, he’ll be ambitious, and so will his sons and the protagonists of our story serving them.
    This story will explain how we deviated from the known historic course of events and got to the starting situation of the game.

    • A lot of historical figures are included; a lot of fictional characters allude to historical ones that lived in different times, especially the Italian renaissance. I pay homage to a lot of stuff, even if it’s anachronistic. Like Marco Polos “Il Milione” in the first chapter. You can try to catch all subtle references and indirect quotes, it’ll be a challenge.

    Please note that I need your help to finish this story. Please give me all the feedback you can, to help me stay motivated and improve the quality of this story and of my writing in general.
    There's no better show of appreciation than taking the time and effort to give feedback, even if it's negative. So please don't hold back and be blunt.
    Corrections to grammar, spellchecking and other nitpicky advice are also appreciated. If you had to stop at a point, because it got too boring and the story takes too long to unfold, that is valuable information for me as well, even if you don't intend to ever read on.
    I don't publish because I need validation, but because your advice can help me become a better writer! I will be grateful, and have so far implemented all advice I have been given, and commentators have thereby contributed to the story.
    Thank you.
    Last edited by Cookiegod; October 31, 2018 at 04:01 PM.

  2. #2

    Default I.1 Ye kings and dukes

    Ye kings and dukes

    “Great Princes, Emperors, and Kings, Dukes and Marquises, Counts and Knights! And People of all degrees who desire to get knowledge of power, take this Book and cause it to be read to you. For ye shall find therein all kinds of sinister schemes, and the divers histories of the Great Guelfs, and of their wars, and of their victories, and of their downfall, and of many another event in the world of which our Book doth speak, as witnessed by my own eyes.”

    The old man paused and thought long and hard as to how to proceed with his tale.
    There was so much to tell, so much to explain, but he didn’t know where to begin and the words had failed him anyway. It was useless! Frustrated as he was, he put the quill down, breathed hard and looked at the few lines he had written.
    “Useless!”, he mumbled to himself: “Too arrogant and the sentences are too long! No one will want to read that!”
    And then he proceeded to scrape everything he had written off the parchment.
    This had not been his first attempt, and the parchment was getting thin.
    “Best not continue today”, he reckoned: “But tomorrow I will succeed, and before I die, my work will be finished, and then everyone will read it, and once my name is known to all, I will truly have become immortal!”
    But as he left his study and went outside, he could not help but notice that he had had the same thoughts after his past attempts and that it was unlikely to change in the near future.
    There was only one way this could change: He would have to hire a scribe.
    Last edited by Cookiegod; August 05, 2018 at 03:58 PM.

  3. #3
    Caillagh de Bodemloze's Avatar to rede I me delyte
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    Sep 2014
    the British Isles

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    Hi, Cookiegod.

    This looks as if it's going to be an interesting AAR. I like part 1 of Part I.

    Since you said you didn't mind British spelling feedback, it might be worth me saying that "anyways" should be "anyway". (I have a feeling "anyways" is used in some parts of Britain, but it wouldn't be considered correct formal British English.)

    Getting back to the real point, though, I like the tone and the approach you're taking - the prospective historian frustrated at his own lack of writing skill seems an interesting character. He seems to have strong feelings about the style of writing he wants, so I wonder whether he'll just tell the story and leave the scribe to get on with the writing, or whether he'll interfere...
    Under the patronage of Shankbot de Bodemloze

  4. #4

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    Hey Caillagh,
    Thanks for the feedback. I corrected it.
    I know that part 1 of Part 1 sounds kinda ridiculous. Part 1 is set to cover the story from pre-game until before the game starts, and there should be 5 more if I'm able to finish the story.
    All of the groundwork is laid in this first part, so I kinda had to think the major storylines through already and makes the start tough.
    That's one of the reason why the writers blockade described in the first chapter is ironic:
    1: It reflects on my difficulties to begin this story and
    2: It quotes the introduction of the possibly most read medieval Italian book ever: The book about Marco Polos travel to China ("Il Milione") starts almost verbatim. The old man unwittingly starts his book the same way as a worlds classic from a few centuries later on and then thinks: "Nah, not good enough!"

    With a bit of luck there'll be 2 new chapters coming out before monday.

  5. #5
    Alwyn's Avatar Frothy Goodness
    Content Director Patrician Citizen

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    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    I like the idea of writing an AAR showing us an authentic alternative history based on a campaign in which all factions were played by humans. The opening, with its echo of the start of the tale of Marco Polo's travels, is well done! Looking forward to more.

  6. #6

    Default I.2 The wrong way

    The wrong way
    “You are heading the wrong way.”
    That unprompted statement, spoken by an elderly peasant whom I was just about to pass on the road, took me by surprise. I had expected him to ask for my blessing, or at least greet me with proper respect. Even though I was very young then and he probably thrice my age, I was an ordained priest and my stola was clearly visible to him. But he didn’t seem to care.
    “Why?” I asked: “Does this path not lead across the mountains?”
    “Not all paths are worth treading.” he replied, and gave me unsolicited advice: “Head back where you came from. There is a village a few miles to the north, you will find food and shelter there. Then, follow the course of the river, until you find the via Francigena, which will take you anywhere you want.”
    “Why?” I asked again: “What lies ahead that could possibly warrant such a long detour?”
    “A mile ahead you will find the devil’s bridge. Cross it, and certain peril will follow.”
    “How so?”, I asked ever more sceptical, since my upbringing in a monastery had instilled a resolute disbelief of such superstition in me, and my travels had hitherto affirmed them. Almost every mountain, every bridge, and even some old trees or stones have some grand legends tied to them, and old men and women aplenty telling them in great lengths to anyone who cares to listen. Which I was not.
    The peasant’s answer, however, was short and with fear in his eyes: “If you cross it, the old wolf will take you.”
    I did not understand the menace then, and I didn't ask what or who the old wolf was. Instead, I just laughed at him and proclaimed: “I am a man of god, and where I walk, the lord walks with me. No evil can stop us, and certainly no superstition of an old fool.”
    Resolved not to waste more time, I continued my path without waiting for an answer.
    I could nevertheless hear him yell angrily after me, scolding my youthful arrogance, and calling me a fool.
    As I would find out soon enough, he was right.
    Last edited by Cookiegod; August 05, 2018 at 03:58 PM.

  7. #7
    Alwyn's Avatar Frothy Goodness
    Content Director Patrician Citizen

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    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    Good update! That's an ominous last line!

  8. #8

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    You left us at a position of surprise man .
    The second paragraph was cool .

    I like the abrupt startings .
    To anyone concerned. I am leaving twc. Bye and best of luck.
    And Pike thanks for supporting me always.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    Hi Cookigod,

    I just hopped in and am liking it so far. Since you asked for blunt and honest advice (a wise request, I might add; I find that the desire to be polite while providing criticism makes it almost impossible to decipher what actually needs changing) here are some thoughts I had:

    First of all, a small point on presentation. Since you seem to be putting some premium on how it looks, given the picture at the top and whatnot, I would suggest using contentboxes instead of spoilers for the drop-down sections. They look nicer and make the whole thing have a bit more of a professional feel, which can lure in some more readers right away by making them feel like they're engaging with quality work. If you "Go Advanced" for your posts there is a handy button for contentboxes so you don't even need to worry about getting the coding for them correctly yourself.

    Second, as Callaigh said, the planned approach of following the historian but also his written history is a nice idea, and will allow to get some good character development in there outside the scope of the story. I would suggest you remember that you can use the old man's thoughts and feelings "now" to foreshadow certain events that will happen to him in the history he's writing. It gives you a rich level of opportunity not available in most other AAR styles, so make the most of it!

    Finally, a small point but something that can add a lot to the immersiveness of the story is the word choice. So far almost everything has the phrasing and feel of something old, something that we intuitively think of as "Medieval". However, there are a couple small phrases that smack of contemporary speech, which quickly pull away the general setting you're creating. In particular, I noticed in "Ye Kings and Dukes" the line: "Too arrogant and the sentences are way too long! No one will want to read that!", and in "The Wrong Way" the line: "Almost every mountain, every bridge, even old trees or old stones has some fancy legends tied to them, and old men and women telling them in great lengths to anyone who cares to listen". For the first one I would suggest dropping the "way" in "way too long", as that is the way we talk now, but doesn't feel right for how a historian (possibly an academic one) would be writing or thinking. For the second one I would suggest dropping the word "fancy" or swapping it for something like "grand" or something along those lines. "Fancy" just sounds a bit off in the sentence. These are small things, and not points which require you to rethink anything significant, it is just good to bear in mind the way the choice of diction can influence the general sound and feel of the prose, as that can contribute greatly to whether we think we are along for the ride with our narrator or just listening to some guy tell us a story.

    I hope the comments prove useful, and I'll be keeping up with what you post and giving regular feedback (unless you become agitated with my criticism, in which case I will begrudginly stop )!
    Genesis of Empires | Community Creative Writing
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    | My Nabataean AAR for EBII
    | My Ongoing Creative Writing

  10. #10

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    I liked it! I really did. Your way of writing is interesting and I am excited since you are gonna cover lives of many a men from priests to monarchs! One question- Will you cover this AAR till the 64 rounds you played? I personally found it too short (it's your choice) but I would appreciate if it could be a bit more lengthy. The fun of reading it ends as soon as it begins...
    My AAR- The Restoration of the Empire-A Vanilla Byzantine AAR

  11. #11
    NorseThing's Avatar Moderator
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    Jul 2017
    western usa

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    I just kind of dropped in. Yes. A drop in and I hope I and others are welcomed. Nothing to add, so I will restate what is the best -- you are writing an AAR! A different approach that interests me a great deal. Character development based on a multiplayer game. Interesting. I have subscribed.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    An AAR to a hotseat camapign, now that's interesting! I'm interested in how the players will intereact - dimplomacy wise and militarily. A mysterious ending to your last chapter ... I wonder what will happen to our priest.
    "Never Knows Best"
    The Saga of Haraldr Yngling and the Nordmanna - A M2TW Last Kingdom AAR
    Nous Pauvre Couillons du Front - A NTW The Great War Mod AAR

  13. #13

    Default I.3 Clericus ex machina

    Clericus ex machina

    The old man lived in an ancient tower high up in the mountains that separate coastal Liguria from Lombardy proper to the north.
    This mountain range is quite broad. To the south it ends abruptly where the coast is, whereas to the north the mountains gradually degrade into gentle hills and finally the Padan plain. The main ridge line separating the north and south is quite close to the coast, the northern part therefore featuring countless long meandering valleys dug by streams and rivers, all of which eventually feed into the river Po.
    The old man’s home was just to the north of the main ridgeline, at the very end of one of those valleys that I have spoken of before.
    After failing his last attempt, he had gone outside to get some fresh air whilst gathering his thoughts. He sat on the bench right next to the entrance, and contemplated his problem whilst taking in the view. The V-shaped valley opened up just in front of him, and the midday sun, shining from the south towards the north, lighted it up beautifully. A stream glistered in the sunlight, and cheered the old man’s heart.
    The stream traversed the entire valley where it was deepest. It sprang high in the mountains, ran close to the old man’s tower and at the center of the valley it passed the ruins of a small town. It had, patiently yet erratically, cut deep into the stone, thereby creating a ravine which split the valley in two, and widened towards the end, where it was crossed by a single-arched stone bridge.

    The landscape around him was mostly devoid of human settlement. A few farms were spread around the area, and the burned ruins of a small town catched his eyes. He remembered those days well, when the town had prospered and its streets had teemed with life. Proud men had called it their home, many of whom had been merchants who had made the most from their surroundings and grown rich on trade, as the valley and the nearby mountain pass connected the north to the south. It had been a quite route back then, but now it was all but forgotten. Back then, the tower had stood at what felt like the centre of the world. Now it was in the middle of nowhere, and the only creatures to roam the streets of the town were rats and the occasional wolves. The bridge, single-arched and of stone, connected most of the valley to the rest of the world, but was now scarcely used.

    The old man sighed at the bittersweet memories of the past, and then it reminded him of the problem at hand.
    Time was a factor. He was getting old, and didn’t have much time left. Though he didn’t suffer from any illness yet, and both mind and body were still capable, he knew it was only a matter of time. He knew better than most that fate can strike at any moment, and that it is prudent to be afraid. And fear the fate he did. But it wasn’t death he feared. Death was inevitable. There was nothing he could do about it, and therefore he didn’t worry about it too much. No, his greatest fear was to be forgotten.
    People, he mused, were like structures: Most of them were poorly built and fell soon apart, like the wooden buildings on his estate that were in various states of ruin. Other structures, such as the tower he lived in or the bridge in the distance, both already legacies from a past long gone, would last forever. There was no doubt in his mind as to which fate he’d prefer.
    But the old man hadn’t mastered the art of masonry.
    His means to achieve immortality were different: Parchment and ink.
    Too bad he hadn’t mastered the art of writing either. He needed a scribe.
    But where would he get one in this godforsaken place?
    He was the only literate one still to live in this valley. And it wasn’t likely that a scribe would walk over the bridge anytime soon.
    The bridge. He stared at it in desperation, and then all contemplations came to a sudden halt.
    Was his mind playing tricks on him or had his longing eyes just spotted someone crossing it?
    But all his doubts were quickly swept away as he heard one of his men, who stood guard on the top of the tower, report the arrival of a newcomer.
    The newcomer was me, and reckless as I was, I had been walking straight into the old wolfs lair.
    Last edited by Cookiegod; August 05, 2018 at 04:00 PM.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    A quick update:

    Thank you for the sudden attention this thread has received. It motivated me to restart the AAR. A year ago several reasons led to me abruptly stopping it (mostly rl & holidays), but when it reemerged I decided to give it another go. Initially I tried to make it before June 12/13ish, as that was the date I had set a year ago, so no one could accuse me of lying (lol), but I simply couldn't make it in time.
    Writing this latest part was also a pain, even though it is nothing special. I try to apply Chekhovs gun and keep the story simple, therefore I keep cutting stuff that is irrelevant for the time being, and try to only present it once it's relevant. And yet I can't avoid this lengthy exposition which consists of three parts so far, and will have at least two more parts before actual game action kicks in.

    This is due to the following: So far, the 2 narrators (one in first person, who shall be the writer and relates it to us, one in third person, who shall tell the tale to him) have been presented, and as you've read in the last part, their paths are about to cross. Some more backstory is necessary, one to why the situation at the start of the game is the way it is, and one personal to the storyteller, explaining the reasons why he's present. So two more parts of exposition are what I'm aiming at, 3 if I do it wrong, so I felt it was necessary to justify to you guys why it progresses so slowly.

    As for when the next part comes out: I don't know, I hope soon. I'm not good at keeping schedules, and I'm a tad too much of a perfectionist. But right now I have time.

    I want to thank you all for your criticism, which is the best compliment one can get. So far I've implemented almost all the suggestions I've received, since they were good. The only exception being the content boxes due to browser-related technical difficulties. Once I find out how, I might do that as well.

    Please continue giving me feedback. It really goes a long way to motivate me, and sorry if the parts so far have been boring. That's one of the two things I fear the most. The other being the story being too complicated. Which it, as far as I've planned it out in my head, kinda is.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    I'm sure the rest have summed it up succinctly, so I just want to say, keep it up! Don't worry about uploading schedules, we all have our own lives to look after and I'm sure some of your readers don't check in that often anyway. All the best and I hope you keep writing

    Swaeft's Scribblings (Library)| Swaeft's Snaps (Gallery)| My Blog (The Lensation)

  16. #16
    Alwyn's Avatar Frothy Goodness
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    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    Keeping the story simple sounds good. A slow reflective pace can work well with fairly short updates, as you're doing here. It sounds like the old man might be about to have a solution for his problem.

  17. #17
    Turkafinwë's Avatar The Soulforged
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    Schoten, België

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    A lovely story thusfar! I must say I agree with Swaeft and Alwyn that you should definitely keep writing and not worry about schedules as well as that the slow reflective pace works quite well. I can relate to the old man's ambitions to do something but knowing you don't have the required skills to do it yourself. +rep

  18. #18

    Default I.4 The arrival

    The arrival

    The old man had waited for me. Patiently. Watched every step I took as I walked straight into his trap, not even realising my presence was known to men. But when that road led me through the burned out ruins of the town, I felt a shiver running down my spine. Something terrible must have happened here. That same morning I had laughed at the old peasant for his superstition, but his words had had their effect, and fear had swept all rationality aside.
    What if some people who had died here had failed to find their peace? What if their spirits were still guarding their homes? I had no desire to find out. I started praying, loudly, hastened onwards, and as my pace quickened, so did my voice.
    The tower seemed so safe in comparison back then, and as I had finally left the town behind me I was already thinking whether I could find shelter there for the night. But before I even got to make that choice at the intersection, where the path to the tower forks from the road, I had already been apprehended by the old man’s henchmen, who in no unclear terms explained the choice they had made for me.
    I was led to the tower, and met the old man for the first time. His age was hard to determine. Most of his hair was cut short, only his beard was white and long and put Methuselahs to shame. His sunburnt skin, both wrinkled and covered in countless scars, testified of a long life full of dangers only few men could survive. It dawned on me that he was the old wolf I had been warned of, and I became frightened. I had been led to him like a lamb to the butcher, and all of his conduct was carefully aimed at bringing the same message across:
    ‘I have all the power and you have none. There is nothing you can do but to adhere to my will.’
    He did not rise from his bench to meet me. His arms were wide open, as he was confident and there was no need for him to be defensive. The smile on his lips would have been pleasant, if it wasn’t for the treacherous look in his grey eyes, which made his facial expression as a whole unnerving. His gaze seemed to pierce right through me, and it went up and down, as if I’d become a commodity for him to assess. The rest of his body did not move, and so we both tested each other and waited for the other to break the silence and speak first. It was clear from the onset who would give in. The silence felt worse than any loud threat could have, and I wouldn’t have wished it upon my worst enemy.
    After what felt like an eternity I finally greeted him: “Dominus vobiscum” – The lord be with you. I had tried to sound confident, but had failed miserably at that.
    The smile on his face grew wider, but he remained silent for a while longer, before he finally replied: “Et cum tuo.”
    He made another deliberate pause, and then the interrogation began:
    “Where are you travelling from?”
    “Bobbio abbey.”
    “Where are you heading?”
    A man of god goes where he is needed.
    My cryptic response earned an irritated look, and he waited silently for a better response.
    “Does it matter?” I retorted, not wanting to give everything away.
    “No.” he answered, laughing at my pitiful display of defiance, and continued my questioning unperturbed.
    “You are right, it does not. But why did you choose this route?”
    “It is shorter, and there’s a war going on in the north.”
    “There always is.” He replied with a grin on his face.
    “Not like that. The Germans are back. Their king is going to make himself emperor.”
    The old man seemed surprised for a second, but he caught himself quickly.
    “Don’t worry. You will be safe here.”
    “But I don’t want to stay here. I need to get to the coast as quickly as possible.”
    “Anyone crossing my land has to pay a toll to me.”
    “I don’t have anything of value.”
    “Bobbio abbey is famed for its library. Can you write?”
    “Then we will find an arrangement.”
    “What if I just wanted to go back where I came from?” I pleaded desperately.
    “There’s a toll in that direction also.”
    “Do you really want to hold a man of god captive? Don’t you fear the wrath of god?”
    I had raised my voice and tried to sound menacing, but my voice crackled and the only response I earned was instant ridicule by him and his men.
    “I thought a true man of god goes where he is needed.” He quipped, mocking me, as his men started laughing at me.
    “This god forsaken place doesn’t seem to need a priest.” I protested meekly. I already knew I had lost, but didn’t want to give up straight away.
    But the old man had also sensed his victory and jumped up with surprising agility.
    “And that is where you are wrong.” He said emphatically, as he gripped my shoulders with each of his hands: “This god forsaken place is where you are needed the most.”
    He looked and talked jovially, but the firmness of his grip and the cold look from his eyes both told me I wasn’t be going anywhere. I accepted defeat and nodded meekly, and so began my career as a chronicler of truly evil deeds.
    Last edited by Cookiegod; August 05, 2018 at 04:01 PM.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    I hope you like that newest part, I think it concludes chapter 1, since the chronicler is finally where we need him to be. Next part comes hopefully soon. How soon? Very soon.

    I also have a question about an annoying problem for those of you techsavvy: I can't edit my first post. Neither with Opera, nor with Chrome. Both block any attempt to "go advanced" because they see suspicious code.
    Which is really annoying, since I need to change the post. Any advice here would be appreciated.

    Bonus information: I mentioned Bobbio abbey for two reasons. One: As a reference to Umberto Ecos name of the rose. The fictious monastery in his book is in part based on the abbey mentioned before.
    I have to confess I didn't manage to last through either the book or the movie, but I'm sure both are great.
    Two: To give those of you wo want it an approximation of where the fictious valley of this AAR is placed that serves as a microcosm version of Italy, as well as both a start and an end point of the tale you have just begun to hear.

    Oh, and btw, my crippling OCD forces me to reiterate that I'm hungry for any feedback you can give me. I can't do a post without mentioning that.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Of Wolves and Prey

    To be honest, I didn't even notice that this was from 2017, it was one of the higher posts at the time when I commented, but I am glad that you decided to restart the AAR. Hopefully the long break has given you a fresh perspective, and it certainly seems that way with the way you write. Your writing is great, and I love the mystery behind this old man and how he managed to ensnare the young man, although I personally feel that it was a rather sudden turnaround from scoffing at the old man and walking away, to coming back and meekly submitting to him. But it's not a very big drawback, and I am looking forward to seeing the next chapter! Have a rep

    Swaeft's Scribblings (Library)| Swaeft's Snaps (Gallery)| My Blog (The Lensation)

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