Tuesday, May 30, 2017

First Kiss #1

TITLE: In This Fateful Hour
GENRE: YA Supernatural

17 yr. old Marielle is mentally and emotionally exhausted after the recent death of her parents and the disappearance of two of her classmates. She has been having strangely realistic dreams about the missing girls, her parents' deaths, and her love interest, Lucca. Gretchen, one of the missing girls and Marielle's best friend, suggested that Marielle has a guardian angel. Marielle thinks it might be Lucca.

   “Stay,” I whispered.

    The bed sank under his weight. I pillowed my head on his chest and let his warmth soak into me as I fell into a deeper sleep.

    I lay in the snow in Lucca’s arms, under a great white sycamore. He brushed his lips against my hair, my forehead, my eyes. He moved to my jawline, then my neck, sending warm shivers through me that rested in the pit of my stomach.

    My lips found his. They moved together, then apart. His warm breath filled me. My body trembled under his hands as they traced lines down my back.

    “Is this real?” I asked between kisses.

    “It’s your dream. It can be as real as you want it to be.”

    Lucca pressed himself against me, his lips hard and urgent as they moved down my neck and back to my lips. My fingers found his hair, followed the contours of his face. Where our bodies touched, his pulse throbbed against me. I pushed away, my breath heavy.

    “I want this, but not in a dream.”

    His eyes were intense and sad before he looked away. He wrapped his arms around me, enfolding me in his warmth.

    “If you ever doubt my feelings for you, remember this night.”


  1. I’m really confused as to whether or not this is a dream. The opening suggests it starts out real and then she drifts to sleep, but by the end it feels real again. If this is meant to blur the line between dream and reality, then good job, this nails it. But if it is supposed to be one or the other, it’s unclear. Could be that I just needed a little longer in the scene, which I presume I would get if I were reading the full manuscript, so that doesn’t necessarily mean it isn’t working.

    The actual kiss seems more rushed than intended, too many intense sensations running together (shivers, trembling, pulse throbbing). Not saying these can’t be used together, but here it’s jumpy and erratic. It made me uneasy, but then, she seems uneasy too, so if that’s what I was feeling and was supposed to, then it worked. I do really love the ending. I like that she doesn’t want the moment cheapened by the fact that it’s a dream, that she’d rather wait for the real thing. And while I adore his reassurance, it is part of what makes me think it’s real and not a dream.

    Unless it's important that it's ambiguous (which I wondered from the lead-in), I'd like it clearer if it's real or not. I don't mind her feeling uncertain, but I, as a reader, would like to be grounded.

  2. What a lovely dream! I hope they never wake and she can stay in love and content and not have to deal with the recent deaths. We all need dreams like these.

  3. There were some very nice details in this page and I am interested in this kiss scene and wondering what occurs in the pages that follow. Well done. There were a few words I wondered about such as "pillowed," in the first paragraph. It struck me too much and I would have preferred "I lay with my head against his chest."
    The "if you ever doubt my feelings line" confused me a little bit unless Lucca has the ability to control what happens in her dreams. Otherwise, if it were only a dream of course Marielle may still doubt his feelings because the kiss never actually did happen in real life.

  4. This is almost certainly the fault of the word limit, but I am so confused as to why they are clearly in bed together and then the kiss happens in a dream. I will trust that it sets up something important, but it's also a bit of a let-down that a first kiss between your mains happens in a dream.

    I suppose for me that this draws from the cliche of opening a story with an exciting dream only to have the character wake up in a mundane situation. While your story clearly relies on a link between dreams and reality, I'm not sure having the first kiss in a dream is... fair? I can see them flirting, teasing, trying in the dream, but I want their first kiss to be real. First kisses are so important and to relegate it to a dream lets down the magic of it.

    Of course, this criticism is purely my own perspective and since I can't contextualize what is happening, obviously take it with a few flakes of parsley. However, I do question why they are in bed together and nothing is happening. I'd be happier to see her dream of something leading to a kiss, and then decide she would rather it be real. Some of this will depend on whether Marielle is a proactive or reactive MC, I suppose.